Obituary for Tuesday, June 8, 2021

Ernell Dagmar Pua‘ala Leong

Ernell Dagmar Pua‘ala Leong passed away on May 21, 2021, from advanced neurological disease. Born Jan. 26, 1942, in Waimea, she was the youngest child of Tai Sum and Priscilla Hualalai Leong. A proud Kamehameha Schools alumni (KSK ‘60), she graduated from the University of Hawaii at Manoa before a 41-year career with the state Department of Labor and Industrial Relations. She was a Mahaulu and Leong family historian, avid cook and lover of all things ono.

She is survived by siblings Rexford Leong, Llewellyn (Kay) Leong and Mynnette (John) Sentinella, and now joined in aloha by sister-in-law Dolly and nephews Leland and Kendall.

She could be infamously short on patience (quick to ask out of your car, or to put you out of hers), but so very long on aloha for all who loved her and whom she loved back. In her greatest times of need, she was kept in Ke Akua’s hands by the family at Analani ARCH (Cora Saludares) and the divine friendship of former colleagues Arthur Barba and Sharon Lum.

Sistah, Tita, Aunty, Tita wita, Ernella, Ernie and Ernell: by whichever name we knew her, her bond was our earthly blessing.

A remembrance for family and friends will be held in the near future. Condolence messages and inquiries can be directed to Kent Sentinella at:


Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


By participating in online discussions you acknowledge that you have agreed to the TERMS OF SERVICE. An insightful discussion of ideas and viewpoints is encouraged, but comments must be civil and in good taste, with no personal attacks. If your comments are inappropriate, you may be banned from posting. To report comments that you believe do not follow our guidelines, send us an email.