Sunday, September 26, 2004


Valerie and Akihiro Moriwaki have worked with Earl and Sue Shimabukuro for 10 years to cleanse haunted homes.

Palolo man gives spirits
nudge in ‘white’ direction

» Notorious home

When Akihiro Moriwaki was a teenager, he would awaken in a cold sweat after he heard mumbling sounds in his bedroom in Palolo.

His aunt called a transmedium, who told the Moriwakis that the former owner of their Palolo home was angry that his daughter sold their house and that the Moriwakis were making structural changes.

The transmedium told Moriwaki, a Buddhist, to recite Buddha's name three times should the mumbling sounds return.

It worked.

His past experiences with mysterious disturbances led Moriwaki to help other families who encounter unusual activities in their homes.

Moriwaki, 47, along with his wife, Valerie, and Earl and Sue Shimabukuro of Aiea, work together to cleanse homes.

"A lot of them (spirits) are in transition," said Sue Shimabukuro. "They are stuck in between. We just help the energies move on."

Moriwaki, who describes himself as a transmedium, has helped others for the past decade. He said homes located in valleys are "hot spots" because they were populated with native Hawaiians.

Valerie and Akihiro Moriwaki and Earl and Sue Shimabukuro sit in a circle and burn herb sage to communicate with spirits.

Recently, they helped a Kaneohe resident clear her home of disturbances after her family members would see and hear an elderly woman coughing.

The resident, who did not want her name published, said she met Moriwaki through her neighbor and told him that her 84-year-old mother felt drained whenever she was in the house.

"She was always sick," she said. Moriwaki said whenever the elderly woman would appear, the resident's mother would feel more drained than normal.

Other disturbances such as mysterious dark shadows and sounds of footsteps also occurred in the two-story house.

In July, Moriwaki and his group formed a circle in the home with the resident's family members to help guide the spirits. White sage, Hawaiian salt and a sage stick with frankincense and myrrh were used to help lead entities toward the "white light."

So far, the cleansing has worked.

"You could see an alertness to my mother that we haven't seen in a long, long time," she said.

Moriwaki said those who don't believe in the existence of entities are the ones that seek his assistance. "It's good to be skeptical ... If there are things that you don't understand, it may be time to reach out to someone who have the answers," he said.

He noted that those who are embarrassed to seek help are not alone. "Don't fear the unknown," said Moriwaki. "It's something that you learn to live with and respect."

"If something is going on and you're going through something like an illness and doctors can't find anything wrong ... At that point, you might want to seek something that goes beyond the physical."

"They might be trying to get your attention for some reason," he said.

Moriwaki can be reached at 737-6607.



One of two houses at 557 Kainalu Drive in Kailua served as a den for a German spy who provided intelligence for the Japanese military leading up to the bombing of Pearl Harbor. The present owner, John Piper, bought the houses in 1999.

Spy signaled Japanese
subs from Kailua lair

The two-story, A-frame home stands out among the ranch-style residences in Kailua's Coconut Grove neighborhood not just for its architecture.

During the late 1930s, the 557 Kainalu Drive property served as the den for a German spy who provided intelligence for the Japanese military leading up to the bombing of Pearl Harbor.

The owner at the time was Julius "Otto" Kuhn, a former Nazi intelligence agent who had come to Hawaii in 1935 under the guise of studying the Japanese language.

But after meeting with Japanese intelligence officials and the country's consul general for Hawaii, Kuhn began providing details on the locations of U.S. military ships in Hawaii.

In 1941, Japanese intelligence officials gave him $14,000 in $100 bills to purchase the Kailua home so that he could signal the whereabouts of the Pearl Harbor fleet to Japanese submarines submerged off Windward Oahu, according to Star-Bulletin reporter Burl Burlingame in his book "Advance Force -- Pearl Harbor."

Kuhn, whose son Leopold worked for Nazi propaganda minister Josef Goebbels, later devised a complex system of relaying information to signal Japanese forces that were offshore.

After scouting the U.S. ships in Pearl Harbor, Kuhn signaled the Japanese submarines by using lights on the beach at Lanikai. He also used sails on beached boats or arrangements of clothes on a laundry line.

At one point, he placed coded advertisements on radio station KGMB to provide intelligence for the Japanese. For instance, an ad for a Chinese rug meant that the U.S. battle fleet had left the harbor, Burlingame wrote.

Kuhn was arrested several hours after the bombing of Pearl Harbor and was convicted on spying charges in a secret trial. A military court sentenced him to death by firing squad, but his sentence was later reduced to a 30-year prison term.

Kuhn later returned to Germany, where he died.

His Hawaii properties, including the Kailua home, were seized by the military and eventually sold.

John Piper, who purchased the four-bedroom home in 1999, said he occasionally gets inquiries from strangers off the street about the house.

Piper, who is not related to Kuhn, said that some of the inquirers have asked him if he is one of Kuhn's descendants.

Despite Kuhn's notorious past, Piper said that he was always attracted by the house and its unique features, such as a 14-foot-high ceiling.

"I've always heard about the history to the house," Piper said, "but I just liked the house. It has a ton of character that you can't find in newer homes. It's a wonderful old house."

Click picture below for map of 557 Kainalu Drive




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