Hit-and-run driver still on the run

Family members of a woman injured during a hit-and-run accident on Super Bowl Sunday aren’t quite sure how they are going to pay all the medical bills.

“Some of it will be covered by insurance and Social Security, but the rest of it we just don’t know,” said Ginalyn Ofamin of Kapa’a, the daughter of the woman who was hit.

Solidad Ofamin, 66, was enjoying an evening with her family at her home off Kawaihau Road Sunday around 6:40 p.m. after many on the island had just finished watching the Super Bowl.

Though the Ofamins hadn’t been watching the game, the Filipino family was together enjoying their Sunday.

Solidad Ofamin was in her front yard on Kawaihau Road near Honua Road when a pickup truck headed for Kapahi swerved around a car pulling into a driveway, family members said.

As the pickup swerved to miss the vehicle in the driveway, it struck Solidad, launching her to the middle of the roadway, and then kept going.

The 66-year-old sustained severe bruising to her arms and shoulders, a shattered right shoulder, and lacerations to the face and arms.

The man or woman driving has yet to be identified.

“I was coming down from Kapahi going towards my home near St. Catherine’s School, and all of a sudden, there she was, lying face down in the middle of the road,” said Jaselyn Ornellas of Kapa’a. “We stopped immediately and called 911, then stopped traffic.”

“The driver (of the pickup) just kept going,” said Ginalyn Ofamin. “He was in a Ford Ranger, kind of a blue color, and kind of high for a Ranger.”

The car that was pulling into the driveway was that of the granddaughter of the injured woman, Jeanatte Ofamin. Jeanatte had just come from the Coconut Marketplace, where she worked. The husband of the injured woman, Sulpicio Ofamin, was with Jeanatte.

The pickup that struck Solidad had been behind them the whole way. The family speculated that the driver may have been drunk, because of the erratic nature of the driving.

“We haven’t found that vehicle yet,” said Assistant Chief Clayton Arinaga of the Kaua’i Police Department.

Family members and Ornellas comforted Solidad Ofamin until emergency personnel arrived. “They took her by ambulance to Wilcox Hospital, where she was in critical condition,” said Ginalyn Ofamin.

Kawaihau Road was closed for a time, as emergency personnel tried to figure out what happened.

“The police found reflectors at the scene that said ‘Ford,'” said Ornellas. “They were passenger side, front reflectors.”

Police informed Ornellas that the Ford reflectors were from the hit-and-run vehicle, and were the result of the collision.

Police have not found the vehicle, and the driver has not turned himself or herself in.

Solidad was later transferred to The Queen’s Medical Center in Honolulu. At The Queen’s Medical Center, she went through surgery to repair the damage to her shoulder.

“I talked to her yesterday, and she is doing better,” said Ginalyn Ofamin on Thursday.

Solidad Ofamin retired from the Islander on the Beach resort a few years ago, where she had been a housekeeper for 10 years. Her husband, Sulpicio, is still a groundskeeper at various properties. Together, they have five children in Hawai’i and six in the Philippines.

In the meantime, the family wants answers. “We hope somebody can find him,” said Ginalyn Ofamin. “We really need help. We don’t know if we will be able to pay for everything. We’re not sure if the police are looking for (the driver).”

If anyone has any information, it can be offered without being named by calling the traffic division at the KPD: 241-1633.

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