Yukimura, Domingsel get 1st church scholarships

  • Jasmine Choquette / Special to The Garden Island

    Ryan Valenciano, the son of Placido and Michelle Valenciano, shows off his diploma for his doctorate in physical therapy degree from Regis University in Denver. Valenciano is an alumnus of Kaua‘i High School and performed his undergraduate work at the Pacific University in Forest Grove, Oregon to earn his bachelor’s degree in exercise science with a minor in Japanese studies.

  • Dennis Fujimoto / The Garden Island

    Jaden Domingsel, one of two Lihu‘e Christian Church Scholarship recipients, thanks the congregation Sunday as Audrey Yukimura, the second scholarship recipient, and Harold Tavares, the church moderator, listen.

  • Dennis Fujimoto / The Garden Island

    High-school graduates, including the recipients of the first Lihu‘e Christian Church Scholarships, are honored for their respective achievements Sunday during the church’s baccalaureate service. Shown are Michael Perry, Mason Martinez, Jaden Domingsel, Lilli Morita, Audrey Yukimura and Kamalei Berg.

LIHU‘E — Audrey Yukimura said Sunday she is grateful to her grandmother Jennie Yukimura for bringing her to church where she learned about God.

Audrey, the daughter of David Yukimura and Emily Thomas and granddaughter of Jennie and the late Jiro Yukimura, was one of six high-school graduates honored during the “Happy Graduation” service. She, along with Jaden Domingsel, received the first-ever, $1,000 LCC Scholarship, presented by Harold Tavares, church moderator and the lead on establishing the scholarship program.

Following her graduation from Kaua‘i High, Audrey plans to complete her associate degree at Kaua‘i Community College before transferring to a college on the East Coast to pursue a business degree with a focus on psychology.

Domingsel, the son of Ryan and Annabel Domingsel and grandson of Alfred and Gale Domingsel, plans to pursue a degree in radiologic technology, and hopefully play baseball, eventually returning home to work.

Audrey and Jaden were two of the six graduates — four from Kaua‘i High and two from Kapa‘a High — who were honored and congratulated by the church.

“Today we present you with a key chain that will hold the keys to your life, and a camera to direct your steps,” said Joni Fujimura. “Like a camera, focus on what is important, capture the good times, develop from the negatives, and if things don’t work out, take another shot.”

Other graduates celebrated were Lilli Morita from Kaua‘i High and Mason Martinez, a member of Scouts of America Troop 148 sponsored by LCC.

Michael Perry and Kamalei Berg of Troop 148 are graduating from Kapa‘a High.

Also receiving accolades are two college graduates — Ryan Valenciano, who earned his doctorate in physical therapy from Regis University in Denver, and Dr. Taryn Miyake, earning her doctorate in internal medicine from the John A. Burns School of Medicine at the University of Hawai‘i at Manoa.

“The Class of 2021 is indeed a special group of graduates, as they have had to endure the challenges of a pandemic for more than a year,” Fujimura said. “They have proven to be resilient, flexible, resourceful and focused — traits that will serve them well as they step out into the world.”


Dennis Fujimoto, staff writer and photographer, can be reached at 245-0453 or dfujimoto@thegardenisland.com.


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