Virtual Annual Puna District Interfaith Memorial Day Observance – May 29, 2021 at 10:00 a.m.
In 1947, under the guidance of former minister Reverend Jukaku Shirasu, a memorial was erected in the garden on the grounds of Puna Hongwanji Buddhist Temple that bears the names of Puna area residents that were killed in action. Each year we remember and honor the residents by calling their names during our Annual Puna District Interfaith Memorial Day Observance. The monument is located on the front lawn of the temple. We have listed the names of Puna area residents that were killed during World War II, the Korean Conflict, and the Vietnam Conflict. We are working to purchase a plaque to include the names for those from the Iraq-Afghanistan Conflicts.
Due to Covid-19, we will once again share a virtual Puna District Interfaith Memorial Day Observance on Saturday, May 29, 2021 at 10:00 a.m. We will be premiering the video on our Puna Hongwanji Facebook and YouTube pages. We hope in 2022 during our 75th Anniversary we will be able to be on the front lawn of Puna Hongwanji with all of you to pay tribute and honor these people that sacrificed their life so we can have the freedom we have today.
Our guest speaker for the event will be Debra Lewis, Colonel, USA Ret. Deb Lewis is a West Point graduate from its first class with women. She is a retired Army Colonel and Harvard MBA. Deb commanded three US Army Corps of Engineer Districts, including a $2.B rec
onstruction program in combat. She survived the attack on the Pentagon on 9/11, while serving on the Joint Staff antiterrorism team. Colonel Deb led while under fire, and her experiences help others become better leaders. After serving 34 years, Deb and husband Doug Adams moved to Hilo where she founded Mentally Tough Women to provide unique training to help women (and men) successfully handle stress. Local non-profits she supports include: Chair of the Hawaii Island Veterans Day (7 years), Zonta, the Mayor’s Veterans Advisory Committee and Lyman Museum’s Board of Directors. This June, Deb becomes the Hawaii State Commander for the Veterans of Foreign Wars.
During the memorial we will have participating churches from the Puna District participating by offering a prayer or few words before each conflict and calling of names. Participating in this years events includes: Rev. Satoshi Ka’imipono Tomioka, Puna Hongwanji Buddhist Temple; Pastor Alan Tamashiro, Puna Baptist Church; Pastor Lorin Carmichael, Sure Foundation Puna; Pastor Jack Snell, Puna Covenant Church; Pastor Scott Shiroma and Pastor Frank Castagnetti, New Hope Puna; and Michael Donenfeld, Mindfulness Meditation Facilitator, Artist, Community Builder.
World War II – Stanley Cabral; Yuzo Hayashida; John Hernandez; Seiji Higa; Isamu Kanetani; Yutaka Kawamoto; Morio Mizumoto; Frank Mugihira; Shoichi Nakahara; Tadao Nakamura; Mitsuru Ochiai; Eishin Oshiro; Seikichi Oshiro; Kazumi Tsutsui; and Alfred Veriato
Korean Conflict – David Aspili; Julio Figueroa; Yoshimi Fukumoto; Isaac K. Hale; Koichi Moriwaki; Wilson Park; and Paul K. Ura
Vietnam Conflict – Moses I. Kuahiwinui Jr.; George G. Luis; Gilbert Olivar; Hayward K. Peleiholani; and George S. Salema
Iraq-Afghanistan Conflict – Ray M. Furhmann II and Kirk Takeshi Fuchigami Jr.
If you are in the Puna area and would like to drop off flowers or greenery to the temple, we will be collecting them on Friday, May 28, 2021 from 8:30 a.m. – 9:30 a.m. We have some volunteers that will make some floral arrangements to be put in front of the monument.
Thousand of people may live in a community but it is not one of real fellowship until they know each other and have sympathy for one another. A true community has faith and wisdom that illuminate it. It is a place where the people know and trust one another and where there is a social harmony – Teaching of Buddha.
2020 Virtual Puna District Interfaith Memorial Day Observance. https://youtu.be/mYqwPx9WNBE.
2021 Virtual Puna District Interfaith Memorial Day Observance. https://youtu.be/VzpWODP4awk