Inside Sports for Sunday — December 11, 2005

• Clearing up an unclear letter


Clearing up an unclear letter

By Duane Shimogawa Jr. – The Garden Island

A letter. Oh what it can do in a small community like ours. It was Tuesday, Dec. 6 on The Garden Island’s forum page, where a letter to the editor was published pertaining to the quarterfinal state high school football playoff game at Hanapepe Stadium on Nov. 18 between Kaua’i Interscholastic Federation champion Kaua’i and Kamehameha-Maui.

“Wally Silva” wrote a letter explaining that he had lost all of his respect for the Waimea High Menehune football program because of an incident he witnessed at that game. He wrote that, during halftime, Waimea Athletic Director Jon Kobayashi gave the Kamehameha-Maui football team a list of ways to stop the Red Raiders. “Silva” also transmitted that Kobayashi “ventured himself into their locker room to explain the detailed list in person.”

“Silva” also wrote that he backed up his findings after the game with a Kamehameha-Maui player. Now if you know Jon Kobayashi like I do, then you probably will be shaking your head with disbelief after what was just mentioned.

I spoke to Kobayashi a couple of times after the letter was published, and he told me that he was at the game, but never even got close to the locker room. Instead, he said that he was at the gate for most of the time, with Kaua’i Athletic Director Charlene Quinones.

It’s almost like a bad joke, and most who know Kobayashi would tell you that he would never do such a thing. In a small community like ours, there are always instances where things get mixed up, so I decided to contact Kamehameha-Maui head coach Leo Delatori.

The secondyear Warrior head man noted that his offensive coordinator, Jeff Kihune, has the same type of build and hairstyle as Kobayashi. He also went on to say that a student from Kamehameha-Maui, who keeps stats for the team, met with the coaching staff outside of the locker room during halftime. And if you were at that game, you’d be quick to notice that both Waimea and Kamehameha-Maui sport the colors of blue and white. So “Silva” could’ve seen something suspicious, but his assumption is where he went wrong.

The only non-Maui individual to enter their locker room was someone with a Kaua’i High School T-shirt, who was holding a video camera. After the game, Delatori learned that the person was just trying to get footage of his team for a highlight reel.

“He (Kobayashi) did not come into our locker room. I’ve never had the pleasure in meeting him, but I sure hope I get the chance to meet him someday. I’ve heard so many good things about him,” Delatori said. “I’ve never experienced this kind of thing happening. There wasn’t much room for anyone else (in the locker room),” Delatori said. Instead, Delatori was all but unsatisfied about his team’s stay on Kaua’i. “Our whole experience on Kaua’i was great during the whole trip. Kaua’i High School treated us with respect, and they gave us everything we needed,” Delatori said. The name “Wally Silva” has been searched throughout the island by numerous individuals, and there’s no sign of such a person. As for the letter, it really doesn’t matter if it’s made up or not, because as long as issues like this come up, it’ll give us all a chance to reflect upon what is “real” and what is “fake.”

And if we take into account that getting all the facts first, before making an assumption, it’ll save us all a lot of heartache and time!

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