LIHUE — Sanoe Ho‘okano, a staff water safety officer at the Kekaha tower, has been named the Kauai County Lifeguard of the Quarter presented by Duke’s Kauai, said Mariko Lum of Duke’s Kauai at Kalapaki Beach.
Ho‘okano started her lifeguard career in 2001 at the Waimea Swimming Pool before transferring to beach duty in 2005, states her nomination letter. She has been guarding in the Southwest District for 10 years and is the only female lifeguard on the island as well as the only jet ski rescue female in Hawaii.
She was selected for the honor for her many attributes, including being such a positive role model for the island’s Keiki Junior Lifeguards.
“Sanoe Ho‘okano lives the lifestyle of a true Hawaiian water woman,” said Lum. “Her knowledge of the ocean is second to none, and her aloha spirit is infectous. Ho‘okano enjoys paddling, surfing, diving, swimming, hiking, hunting and cooking. Sanoe’s coworkers love working with her — not just because she is a solid lifeguard, but she makes the best lunches with enough to share with everyone.”
Ho‘okano’s ocean safety tip to people is to always swim at beaches with a lifeguard on duty, and check with them to make sure conditions are safe to enter the water.
The Kauai County Lifeguard of the Quarter is a program facilitated by Duke’s Canoe Club Kauai and the Kauai Lifeguard Association. It honors a lifeguard in the community each quarter who exemplifies outstanding qualities.
Selection is based on recommendations from the KLA and the Kauai Fire Department Ocean Safety Bureau operation chief Kalani Vierra.