Letters for Thursday, April 19, 2007

• Fine educator

• Our mighty halls

• Higher standard

• Striping protocol redux

• In awe of Kaua‘i’s love


Fine educator

My comment is in regards to one of the “Kula educators charged in the drug case” (A1, April 18). I do not know whether he is innocent or guilty, but I do know that Monday through Friday, from 7 a.m. until 5 p.m. and most Saturdays, he worked tirelessly for the good of the students at Kula. He organized team sports for the middle school, he worked with students who were having difficulty, he brought in guest speakers. When most teachers had left the school, he was making repairs, puzzling over problem students, and thinking about solutions to problems that occur in the day-to-day operation of any school. In his spare time he was doing coursework toward his doctorate degree. He has dedicated his life to the education of children and has an incredible work ethic. I would have been honored to have him teach my children. Let’s not prejudge this fine educator. If he has made mistakes, he has not hurt our children.

E. Gail Van Ekeren


Our mighty halls

We are neighbors of Kula School in Waipake and proud members of the Kula ‘ohana. Our youngest son has received a world-class education at this tiny, venerable institution. He attends a school where there is no need for security guards in the parking lot, where there is absolutely no discrimination, and where he can learn in a safe and nurturing environment. This is in stark contrast to our older children’s experiences at public schools where fist fights, racial slurs, drug deals, car break-ins, etc. were common occurrences on campus.

We have watched Kula grow and have applauded the numerous awards and achievements of our faculty and students. It is with absolute certainty that we realize that Kula will only become stronger and better as we move on through this difficult time.

Louisa Wooton, Kula teacher


Higher standard

What a double standard!

Drug testing students is a good idea. However, all administrative staff should be tested, too.

I sure hope the vice principal/athletic director and the teacher get fired from their jobs at Kula Intermediate School.

No questions asked.

Howard Tolbe


Striping protocol redux

Regarding the April 18 letter “On protocol” from Dan Richmond, an answer to Richmond’s comments and questions may come from common sense:

• Kaua‘i County paves a limited number of roads each year (wouldn’t it be nice if more were done?).

• Only major repaved roads require striping — neighborhood roads do not require striping.

• Thus, due to lack of striping demand, the county cannot justify buying automated striping equipment.

• Also, due to lack of demand, multiple manual crews probably cannot be justified.

• A striping crew must move project-to-project by priority (note: The “Tree Tunnel Road” had temporary striping for about a year for this reason).

• Each project takes a long time to layout, measure, mark, and prepare for painted stripes — work that cannot be completed until the asphalt has cooled and cured … thus, temporary stripes are needed or the road needs to be kept closed (don’t want that, do you?).

• Permanent striping is done using a hand-directed, wheeled, painting machine operated manually … again this is labor intensive and takes time—it also needs dry roads.

• The “protocol” discussed by Richmond is not new … it has been used on Kaua‘i for years.

• Be pleased … it will be nice to have permanent striping on the Koloa Bypass Road soon (they are currently painting them) instead of a year from now as happened on the “Tree Tunnel Road.”

By the way, I agree, the temporary striping could be laid straighter so our visitors don’t have a laughing fit and drive off the road.

Vince Jones


In awe of Kaua‘i’s love

It’s been just over two months since the passing of my husband David Boynton and I’m still in awe of the love and support that has been bestowed upon our family. There really are no words that can express just how much your kindness is appreciated and loved. Thank you from the depths of my heart for your prayers, gifts, cards, and endearing words of healing. What an incredible place we live, here on Kaua‘i with the finest folks anywhere. I wanted to share the letter that I wrote for Dave that I was just too emotional to speak at the memorial.

To my dear Dave,

As I walk through the fire of loss, I will find a way to become more alive. I’ve been blessed with the light of understanding who you were, your sovereign self …. and that you felt my strong and continuing love for you.

You’re at peace, all those IOU’s are gone, and you’re soaring high above us all with the immense sense of freedom that you were longing to achieve.

As you were in life, I know you are still guiding us …

Your gifts to us are too numerous to name, but your gift to me is what we finally shared with true understanding: that everyone dreams his or her own dream, and in a relationship you can’t try to direct the course of that other person’s dream. That generosity, freedom, and an open heart are the gifts that you give to each other, along with the utmost respect and awareness of your partner.

I want you to know just how much I admired you. Your incredible ability to capture the very “essence” of the person or landscape that you were photographing. Your humorous pranks that we will all laugh about to help make our hearts lighter. But mostly, your steadfast dedication to teach and share your incredible wealth of knowledge with everyone, everywhere. My vow is to make certain that the learning stays alive by dedicating myself to the task of making sure your stored information gets passed on appropriately. I will continue with diligence to be the caretaker of your vast library of images. They will be shared with our teachers to help educate and nurture our students’ awareness of the immense beauty and fragility of Koke‘e and our island home of Kaua‘i.

Being one with “big momma nature” is how you lived with such a deep and reverent understanding of her. And I find peace in my knowing that you have completely merged within that realm of spiritual bliss. You are truly one with nature and the forest is rejoicing. I will miss you deeply, but this I know, that forever is how long I will love you.

A hui hou aku, Me ke aloha pumehana,

Sue Boynton


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