W. Keli’i Brown Jr.
W. Keli'i Brown Jr. Celebration of Life May 7, 1966 - December 19, 2015 W. Keli'i Brown Jr., known for his joie de vivre, commitment to Hawaiian culture and tireless efforts on behalf of the Maui Visitors and Convention Bureau, died peacefully in his sleep on December 19, 2015. He was 49 years old. Born in Hilo, Hawai'i, he grew up on O'ahu, where he graduated from Kamehameha Schools in 1984. He received his community college degree from Leeward Community College (now the University of Hawai'i West O'ahu) before earning his B. S. degree from Brigham Young University in Utah in 1990. Brown forged an illustrious career in public relations and was known as the consummate professional. His respect for Hawaiian language added precision and authenticity to his work, through which he helped position Maui in global surveys as the "best island in the world." Beginning at the Moscone Center in San Francisco, where he was public relations manager, he made his way to Maui via his home island, Hawai'i, where he was public relations director at Four Seasons Resort Hualalai in Ka'upulehu. It was on Hawai'i Island that he met Jim Crowell, his husband. He then moved to Maui to join the Maui Visitors and Convention Bureau as its public relations and promotions director. Brown also shared his aloha spirit as a wedding officiant and joyously helped marry couples using western and traditional Hawaiian protocol. Nicknamed "Boy," Brown had many rare gifts and was a devoted friend to many. While impeccable about language and protocol, he was hilariously irreverent, renowned for his rapier wit and candor. While traveling extensively to promote Maui, he became adviser, educator, host and friend to the countless people he met along the way. Brown remained an active alumnus of Kamehameha Schools Kapalama, which he fondly called "the mother ship," and maintained a lifelong commitment to the legacy of Bernice Pauahi Bishop. He was a proud and regal Hawaiian. Brown is survived by his husband, Jim Crowell; parents, JoAnn and Kenneth "Nainoa" Perry; sisters Whendy K. Brown (Ashley Stephens) and Donna Makaiwi (Daron); nieces Sara-Ann "Okalani" Ganeau-Brown, Serena "Kapu" Makaiwi-Pascual (Kevin), and Rachel "Hina'ea" Makaiwi Tuiososopo (Ana); nephews Joshua "Nainoa" Makaiwi (Kealani) and Jacob "Kala" Makaiwi, as well as numerous aunties, uncles and cousins. Brown is also survived by his beloved dog, Divaleilehua, and was predeceased by a week by his father-in-law, Glenn "Pops" Crowell, for whom he was a loving caregiver. A Celebration of Life will be held at the Bailey House Museum on Sunday, February 21, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Off-site parking is available at the Yokouchi Estate. There will also be street parking surrounding the venue and at the state and county parking lots. Parking at Bailey House Museum is reserved for handicap and immediate family with parking passes. Visitation and light refreshments are scheduled from 10 a.m. - Noon. The official program takes place from Noon - 1 p.m., with the final visitation at 1 p.m. Lunch to follow.
Our deepest condolences to the family and friends of the deceased