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Thursday, April 29, 2004



Program honors
senior volunteers


Nothing can keep Edward Yapyapan from his senior companion rounds.

The 76-year-old caregiver has taken on every client needing a senior companion no matter how far away from his Waipahu home. Nominated by the state Senior Companion Program, he has been a companion to others even when he cared for his wife during a long illness.

Ellen Hyer, an 81-year-old community activist, wouldn't take "not our jurisdiction" comments from the city and state governments and eventually persuaded the city to dredge a stream next to the Marukai-Gaspro complex on Dillingham Boulevard to avoid damage during flooding in December.

Hyer, a member of various groups nominated by Wahiawa Seniors Rainbow Club, has urged owners to clear and beautify their property and helped ailing friends.

They were honored at the 38th annual Mayor's Senior Recognition Program on Tuesday with 81 other volunteers at the Hilton Hawaiian Village.

Also recognized were six Akamai Living Award winners:

>> Platinum Award -- Barbie Paris, 76, nominated by the Waikiki Community Center, leader of the Steptaculars seniors dance group for 11 years.

>> Gold Awards -- Lorraine Akana, 67, nominated by the Makua Alii and Platinum Seniors, cited for her "can do" attitude toward fund-raising.

Kimi Masuda, 79, nominated by the Sons and Daughters of the 100th Infantry Battalion, noted for helping the Club 100 ukulele club and coordinating the Family Support Group.

>> Silver Awards -- So Pun Ku, 84, nominated by the Lanakila Korean Cultural Club, cited as a visitor and entertainer at nursing homes, hospitals and community events.

Bertha Maunupau, 76, nominated by the Salt Lake Seniors for her volunteer work as a fund-raiser, instructor and performer at the group and area churches.

>> Bronze Award -- Bea Aquino, 85, nominated by the Pali Seniors, noted for work in the Pali Seniors Na Mele Choral Group, entertaining at care homes, hospitals and day-care centers.

The Honolulu Committee on Aging and the Elderly Affairs Division produced the program.



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