Saturday, Dec. 9, 2023 |
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• The life and times of Koge
• Social Security changes
• One cent is 25 percent
•Help stop the stealing
The life and times of Koge
A young boy growing up in Anahola village when pineapple was king and fishing was a way of life, Antonio Saronitman quickly learned and adapted to the life style of the day.
A great pineapple picker and fisherman he developed a great love for the outdoors. All through his early childhood to his teens, he was a natural in all outdoor activities.
Classroom activities were not his forte, but out in the athletic field, he was someone to contend with. At 130 pounds he was an all-star running back, and a track champion, setting a KIF record in the 220 low hurdles for his alma mater, Kapa‘a High School.
After graduating from Kapa‘a High in 1957, Koge found his calling with the United States Army. As a soldier in the infantry, he again displayed great skills and knowledge in the jungles of Vietnam.
He had many citations for his services in the battlefield. The citation for the Silver Star credited Koge with leading his men out of an ambush by the Viet Cong during the height of the Vietnam Crisis.
There were approximately 150 men involved. But he never talked about it. I had to read the citation to know what he did.
I was very fortunate to have been at the ceremonies at Fort Shafter, Honolulu when he was appointed to the rank of Sergeant Major, highest ranking non commissioned officer. Needless to say, I was very proud of my friend for his accomplishment.
When he retired, he returned home on Kaua‘i and worked for the Kaua‘i Lagoons as a starter and worked there until his second retirement earlier this year.
Yes, we lost Koge earlier this month, but I know a whole lot of us guys will be talking about his great accomplishments for a long time. Our great star athlete, military hero, and just a great guy, Antonio Koge Saronitman, Sergeant Major, U.S. Army, retired.
Teofilo Phil Tacbian, Kapa‘a
Social Security changes
The Sentate voted this month to allow “illegal” aliens access to Social Security benefits. Why wasn’t this covered by the media?
We wouldn’t have known except for a petition being circulated via e-mail. The important questions that needs to be answered are, U.S. citizens who have not contributed into it are not eligible.
We, the people vote so our voices can be heard. I don’t believe “illegal” aliens vote — why are they being represented? Why aren’t the needs of our citizens being addressed? Does anyone have an answer?
Camellia Ditch-Crosby, Lawa‘i
One cent is 25 percent
Ms Alalem’s suggestion that Gov. Lingle is being discriminatory to state employees is way off base (“One cent makes sense,” Letters, July 24).
Quite the opposite, it appears that she is trying to partially spread the economic pain to people that already have a favored position in Hawai‘i’s employment picture.
Some other corrections to her statements should be brought to light. The small 1 cent increase to the general excise tax (not sales tax) is a 25 percent increase to an already burdensome, regressive tax on self-employment and business.
It seems ironic that Donna would suggest that private enterprise should pay more in taxes, which would probably require even more job losses so state employees can continue to believe that they are exempt from economic hard times.
Let’s hear it from some of you non-government employees. How would you like 20-plus paid vacation days, 20-plus sick days, every holiday paid, yearly cost of living increases? How about free medical, dental, vision, and drug coverage for most retirees and their spouses? Oh, and how about those pensions? Do I sound envious? You bet I am.
Thank you Gov. Lingle for having some common sense and the guts to stand up to the very powerful public employee unions. And no thanks Donna for your warped and self-serving views. It’s pretty much what I have come to expect.
Don Capener, Kapa‘a
Help stop the stealing
Kaua‘i is getting so bad with this stealing. I have one story that can’t be beat. My mom passed in February, and it was our first Mother’s Day without her. They stole artificial roses of my Mom’s grave.
They knew exactly what they wanted, there were a lot of cheaper ones on the grave. They stole the bunch that my son spent $40 on. At least they left the vase.
This is how low some people are going. To the one who stole it, maybe my mom will come and look for her roses one day. I hope she’s not humbugging you at night.
Bernadette Vea, Hanapepe
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