EDITH ULULANI ELLIS
Edith Ululani Ellis, born May 24, 1931, to former Kauai County Chairman William Ellis and Maria Pihaleo Ellis of Kupolo, Kaua'i, passed away on July 11, 2019. She is survived by her sister Winona Ellis Rubin and 'ohana of the William Ellis and Frank Zeffiro II families. She was a retired design and structural engineer. A private family graveside inurnment was held at Diamond Head Memorial Cemetery. Edith was highly intelligent, industrious, sensitive, innovative, persistent, focused and action-oriented with a wry sense of humor. In addition she was a talented athlete, having won awards for basketball and tennis at Drury College. Father taught her to play the guitar, and she learned slack key from Aunty Victoria Williams. Of course, like the rest of us, she enjoyed playing music specifically the guitar -- singing Hawaiian songs and eating Hawaiian food. Edith was a whiz at math and science in high school and her interest was nurtured by uncle Fred Ellis at Honolulu Iron Works while she was an engineering student at the University of Hawaii the only female in her class at the time. She could occasionally be seen on campus as the sole wahine sighting down a surveyor transit with a group of male classmates. After gaining on-the-job experiences at Honolulu Iron Works she was employed as a design engineer at AMFAC (American Factors) in Honolulu. She had a hand in designing and construction of the Lihue Plantation Sugar Mill conveyor system on Kaua'i. Also, AMFAC sent her to observe disposal systems in New England after which she consulted on design and construction of the H-Power waste/trash compacting facility on Oahu. Sadly, throughout her employment we believe Edith was not paid a salary equal to her male counterparts probably because she was a woman. Edith took early retirement from AMFAC in 1986 to care for our mother at home until mother's death. Edith was careful and precise in whatever she did. As an example, during her retirement while reviewing site maps of our kuleana lands at Niumalu, she found an error. She informed the County of Kaua'i that the small bridge across the stream abutting our property was drawn several feet from its actual location. This error had been reflected on their land maps affecting property owners for over forty years. Wow! Edith initiated and completed the sale of our family lands and took responsibility for detailed reports to siblings. She automatically and conscientiously applied her skills and intensity of focus in ensuring our family affairs were handled well. That was typical of Edith. A caring, sensitive, scrupulously honest manager with a heart of gold, Edith will be sorely missed. Mahalo to all who shared their aloha with her during her lifetime. Aloha nui.
Our deepest condolences to the family and friends of the deceased