Sponsored by:

Comment, blog & share photos

Log in | Become a member
The Honolulu Advertiser
Posted on: Sunday, December 13, 2009

Finding fulfillment in building peace bridges

Advertiser Staff

Hawaii news photo - The Honolulu Advertiser

Jon Yamasato, Herb Ohta Jr. and Darin Leong provided some of the entertainment during last week's Peace Bridge fundraiser.

Photo by Alan Okami

spacer spacer

I have to admit, I've been busted up this year. Business is going well, son is playing baseball, we're renovating our house and my four nonprofit boards are busy, to start the list out. As my health has been in decline, I have been faced with many soul-searching questions: "Why do I do all that I do? How much can my body handle? Am I neglecting my family? Should I spend more time on my business?" All valid questions, coupled with loved ones telling me to slow down.

In answer to many of these questions lies a deep commitment to using what I have available to me. The good Lord has blessed me in many of the areas where questions remain. In addition, I have been gaining voice and influence in my community service, promotions and network. I was blessed to be grounded in a cash-less upbringing, so I understand that my new platform is not for me. It's to better the world around me.

This past Thursday, I helped coordinate my first fundraiser for Peace Bridge, one of the nonprofits I serve on. It's no secret that this one owns my heart in full. We had a few families that adopted some of the children in the house and performers, including Mänoa DNA, Herb Ohta Jr., Jon Yamasato and Darin Leong. Lots of movers and shakers as well in Advertiser bloggers Melissa Chang and Kelli Miura, writer Mari Takemura, Honolulu City Prosecutor Peter Carlisle, Pali Ka'aihue, Tony Conjugacion and a proclamation by Mayor Mufi Hannemann.

We were celebrating a 60-year relationship between the Wolfhounds of Schofield Barracks and the Holy Family Home in Osaka, the longest-lasting tradition in the history of the U.S. Army. The night was capped off with a special presentation of the portrait that captures the essence of what we do, "Wolfhound and Child" to Mr. Nakada, executive director of HFH. In it, Hugh O'Reilly Sr. is holding a child. What is not common knowledge is that the child was born blind and with syphilis. Like every child, they want to be held and loved. No one would touch her. O'Reilly didn't care. The picture says it all. Through the work of the Wolfhounds, the home was able to improve on the living conditions, eventually being able to rebuild the facility. The little girl went on to enter adulthood, and later married to have a family of her own. Regardless of your profession, we are all called to be bridge builders. Spanning the distances between creed, religion and distance. Log on to the Web site, www.wolfhounds-peacebridge.org, to learn about what we do.

I guess I already have the answer to many of my questions: There are bridges to be built.