LIHU‘E — Larry Rivera, Kaua‘i songwriter and entertainer, said he had to come Sunday to the “Russell Would’ve Done It” food drive coordinated by various motorcycle clubs on the island.
“Russell Haluapo and I would meet at Burger King in Kapa‘a to talk story,” Rivera said. “I have video of him when he fixed the pipes under the cement. I was ready to call him and have him fix my toilet when I saw the news on television. I was devastated. I had to come and maybe do a couple of songs for the motorcycle people.”
Starting with “Aloha Begins With Me,” dedicated to ending the current rioting taking place around the country, Rivera sang about the legacy left behind by Haluapo before the several hundred who gathered with contributions of food and money because Russell Would’ve Done It.
Several hundred motorcycle riders representing the various motorcycle clubs on the island brought together 1,010 pounds of food and $1,400 in cash, a vast improvement over the previous May 3 drive when Haluapo and John Copeland had to massage the less-than-$200 sitting in the goldfish bowl prior to the start of the ride.
Just days later, Haluapo was called away by the Lord to do work elsewhere.
The motorcycle riders said the Sunday ride to the North Shore was not a memorial for the person whose benevolence reached and touched many individuals and groups on the island. A more formal memorial is in the planning stages.
Instead, the food drive was an opportunity for the motorcycle riders, other groups like the Kaua‘i Ocean Recreation Exerience, and individuals to gather, offer a short prayer for Haluapo, and convoy because Russell Would’ve Done It.
Dennis Fujimoto, staff writer and photographer, can be reached at 245-0453 or email@example.com.