Silva 'gave from the heart'


POSTED: Thursday, April 30, 2009

Family and friends gathered yesterday to remember Clare B. Silva, president of Punchbowl Homes Residents Association, who “;gave from her heart.”;

She was shot to death on Easter Sunday.





        A garage sale will be held in memory of Clare Silva from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday and Sunday at 45-732 Pookela St., Kaneohe. For details, call 227-0640. Proceeds will go toward helping her family move her belongings to the mainland.



“;Before she came we didn't have anything,”; said Gina Alapa, interim president of the residents association. “;She was the best thing that ever happened to this place.”;

Silva, 54, lived at Punchbowl Homes, a Makiki public housing project for disabled and senior citizens.

More than 100 people attended Silva's memorial service in the complex's grassy courtyard and patio, where Silva held dances and bingo events for residents.

Silva opened a thrift store and snack shop to raise money to pay for building parties. She held parties several times a year to brighten the residents' lives. She also helped open a gym and set up the library corner. She administered a food program at the complex as well.

“;She loved the people here,”; said her aunt, Nancy Arakaki. “;This is really what she wanted. She wanted to be among her friends.”;

Silva's daughter, Tyffny Riordan of Mississippi, came with her husband, Brian, who returned from deployment in Afghanistan to join his wife. Both are hospital corpsman in the Navy.

“;The last time I talked to her she was very happy,”; her daughter said. “;She was planning their Easter function here. She was very high on life.”;


Silva was shot to death on April 12, allegedly by a resident who wanted a romantic relationship. Residents said Silva had rejected the sexual advances of Melvin Yoshida, 70, who has since been charged with second-degree murder.

Silva didn't complain to her daughter about her troubles.

“;She was the type of person she didn't want to worry us,”; she said.

Among those at the service were teens from a church group that Silva invited to cheer up senior residents, and a police officer who worked with Silva.

“;She's very loving and giving,”; said 17-year-old church volunteer Ariel Lee.

Silva worked with the police as a block captain, leading citizen patrols and a sign-waving effort to slow traffic on Captain Cook Avenue after a tenant died in an accident.

“;Without someone like her, there'd be a lot of people sitting in the lobby complaining,”; said Gail Lee, Punchbowl Homes manager. “;That's why I'm still around in housing—because of people like her.”;