Family history in Hawaii

Our roots to Hawaii stretch back to the 1940s – two separate parts of my family would spend time here and one would eventually make Oahu his full-time home by the 1950s.

My grandfather was drafted into the US Army in 1940 and ended up stationed at the Schofield Barracks. He witnessed and survived the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor before moving to other Pacific islands. After his service, back home in Pennsylvania, he met and married my grandmother. In a war-time twist worthy of Herman Wouk, my grandmother’s brother would visit many corners of the Pacific in the War – eventually starting an importing and gift business – and making Hawaii his full time home.

Uncle Joe was a mysterious (to us growing up a world away in Pennsylvania, at least) and generous man who enabled his parents,  my grandparents and many other family members to visit Hawaii.

Uncle Joe’s widow still enjoys life in Honolulu along with some second cousins and their families. If your trip will be taking you to Honolulu, please visit their restaurant – Rock Island Cafe for some nostalgia and fun. It’s a family business owned and operated by my second cousin Gene and his children.

To have our own Hawaii home is a the stuff of stories and dreams come true. Christen and I are thrilled to join in with this nearly 75 years of history with paradise. Click on one of the photos for a short slide show if you are so inclined. Aloha, Tom

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