By Star-Bulletin Staff

Friday, December 17, 1999

Millennium Moments

Millennium special

Camp Erdman

SAY "Camp Erdman" and many recall thoughts of youthful days filled with activities, nights filled with campfire smells.

Probably Oahu's most well-known camp, the Mokuleia Beach site was named for Harold Randolph Erdman, who was born in 1905 in Kobe, Japan, to missionary parents.

After graduating from a mainland college, Erdman returned to Hawaii -- his mother's birthplace -- and worked for the Oahu Railway and Land Co., says "The Beaches of Hawaii" by John R.K. Clark. But Erdman, a polo player, was killed in 1931 when he fell off his horse.

Soon after, Erdman's mother, Marion Dillingham Erdman, and his aunt, Mary Dillingham Frear, penned a letter to Honolulu YMCA officials requesting that Camp Mokuleia be renamed in Harold's memory, Clark says. The women were sisters of business and community leader Walter Dillingham, who was leasing the property to the YMCA for $1 a year. In exchange for renaming the camp the women helped the YMCA gain ownership of the site.

In February 1932, Camp Harold Randolph Erdman was dedicated.


Firm apologizes for herbicide spill

LIHUE -- Amfac/JMB has issued a qualified apology for an herbicide spill Tuesday that forced the evacuation of more than 900 children and staff from a Kauai school.

"It's possible that the cause of the odor was the rinse water from an aerial spray that we use on our agricultural fields," said Lyle Tabata, vice president of Amfac Sugar Kauai. "If we caused the problem, we're extremely sorry it happened."

More than 50 of the evacuees were treated for nausea and respiratory problems and released from Wilcox Memorial Hospital.

The spill is being investigated by the state.

SSI law benefits Filipino veterans

Filipino veterans will continue receiving 75 percent of their Supplemental Security Income benefits even if they return to the Philippines, under a law signed by President Clinton.

"This provision will make a big difference in the lives of many Filipino veterans," said U.S. Rep. Neil Abercrombie, who sponsored the legislation.

"Filipino veterans deserve the full measure of benefits accorded to their American comrades in arms."

Previous law cut off benefits to recipients who left the U.S. About 200,000 Filipinos fought for the Allies in World War II.

Honolulu population up; Vegas the leader

Honolulu grew 4.3 percent through the '90s, and the Las Vegas area, a popular travel destination for state residents, again led the nation in growth.

New figures released today by the U.S. Census Bureau show Honolulu's population rose to 872,478 in 1998 from 836,231 in 1990, an increase of 36,247. The Las Vegas-area population jumped 55 percent between 1990 and 1998 to reach 1,321,546 residents, an increase of 468,900.

Overall, statistics show population growth focusing on the suburbs and nearby communities and away from the nation's central cities, with metropolitan areas in the South and West leading the nation in growth in the '90s.

Nationwide, the central cities in metropolitan areas averaged 3.5 percent growth, while the area outside the central cities jumped 12.5 percent in the '90s.

Saddled with pollution, long lines and jammed roads, Las Vegas residents have seen a dramatic growth spurred by unprecedented hotel-casino construction.

Last week, officials announced Nevada leads the nation in new housing starts. But the Environmental Protection Agency is threatening sanctions because of the area's growing air quality problems, and streets and highways throughout the valley are nearing gridlock.

Elderly housing work starts in Kaneohe

Construction of a complex of 75 affordable rental units for senior citizens in Kaneohe began this week with a ground-breaking ceremony.

Plans for the four-story complex include five units accessible by the disabled, a community center and parking for 48 automobiles.

Other amenities are a common laundry room, storage lockers and sitting areas on each floor.

Pacific Housing Assistance Corp., a private housing company, is developing the $11.4 million project with funding from the city, state and federal governments.

The units will be administered by the state's Housing and Community Development Corp. of Hawaii.

Ships returning to Pearl Harbor

Nearly 700 Hawaii-based sailors were expected to be back in the islands today when the USS Chosin and USS Lake Erie return to Pearl Harbor after a six-month deployment in the western Pacific.

The Ticonderoga-class guided missile cruisers left Pearl Harbor on June 19 to join the USS Constellation Battle Group, according to the Navy.

Hansen's disease patient honored

A Hawaii man recently received the Wellesley Bailey Award for his courage, achievement and outstanding contributions related to Hansen's disease.

Bernard Punikaia, 69, was one of four people honored by Leprosy Mission International. The other winners came from Japan, South Korea and Suriname.

Punikaia, who has Hansen's disease, was isolated at age 6 in Kalihi and later in Kalaupapa.

He has worked tirelessly for the rights of people affected by Hansen's disease, according to the organization, and became advocacy president of IDEA, an international association for "integration, dignity and economic advancement."

The award included a cash prize of 1,000 pounds and was presented to Punikaia at a ceremony held at the Imperial Hotel in Delhi, India.

Kapolei station to open in March

The new Kapolei police station has been tentatively scheduled to open by March, said a Honolulu Police Department spokeswoman.

It was originally scheduled to begin operations in early 1998, but budget cuts and police officer pay raises delayed the opening.

A dedication and ceremony for the $12 million station is scheduled for late February.

Free concert set at Honolulu Zoo

Karen Keawehawaii and the Royal Hawaiian Band will be featured in a free Christmas concert at the Honolulu Zoo from 4:30 to 5:30 p.m. tomorrow.

The public is encouraged to bring a new gift -- such as clothing, toys or household items -- that will go to the Lokahi Tree Project, which provides Christmas assistance to needy families.

Those who can't go to the concert but want to make a donation can drop off their gift at the Salvation Army's warehouse at 556 Reed Lane.

Call Daniel de Castro at 988-2136 for more information.

Nominees sought for child-care award

Good Beginning Alliance, a nonprofit community organization, is seeking nominations of outstanding early child-care professionals for the 2000 Early Childhood Professional of the Year award.

Nominees must have at least five years of experience in providing direct care to children younger than 6. They also must spend at least 75 percent of their day working directly with children and not be in administrative positions.

The award winner and five finalists will be honored at a reception April 7.

Call 531-5502 or write to Good Beginnings Alliance, 828 Fort Street Mall, Suite 203, Honolulu, HI 96813. Nominations must be postmarked by Feb. 11.

Bar association officers elected

Joel E. August has been elected the new president of the Hawaii State Bar Association, the group announced.

August's term begins Jan. 1.

Other officers chosen are David M. Louie, vice president/president-elect; Janice P. Kim, treasurer; and Faye M. Koyanagi, secretary.

Newly elected directors, with terms expiring in 2001, are John P. Gillmor, Susan Ichinose, Howard K.K. Luke, Margaret K. Masunaga, Linnel T. Nishioka, Bert Sakuda, Trudy Senda and Iwalani White.

The Young Lawyers Division also announced its newly elected officers.

They are J. Stanley Yoshimoto, president; Russ S. Awakuni, vice president/president-elect; David M. Raatz Jr., treasurer; and Janna Shiraki, secretary.

Police, Fire, Courts


By Star-Bulletin staff

Honolulu Police Department Crimestoppers

Escapee nabbed after 9-1/2 weeks on the run

Police arrested a man yesterday who had been on the run from the Laumaka correctional facility for two months.

The suspect failed to return to the facility after a work furlough assignment on Oct. 10. Yesterday evening, he was stopped for a traffic offense on River Street and identified as an escapee.

Police probe blast at Campbell High

Police are investigating an explosion from the men's bathroom at Campbell High School yesterday afternoon.

There were no damages to the property, but a school custodian passing the bathroom complained of ringing in her ears. She refused medical treatment.

In addition, police said they arrested two 14-year-old males at Farrington High School after the teenagers were identified as having set off an explosive device on Dec. 2. The suspects allegedly caused an explosion on the Farrington High School football field.

4-1/2 pounds of cocaine seized in Hilo bust

HILO -- Police seized 4-1/2 pounds of cocaine worth $75,000 during the arrest of two men in a parked car yesterday, they said. The suspects, a 23-year-old Hilo man and a 21-year-old Waimea man, were held pending further investigation.

The arrests at a Kanoelehua Avenue site followed two months of investigation, police said.

Officers also found 18 grams of marijuana and arrested the 23-year-old for that offense and for contempt of court.

They also initiated forfeiture proceedings against the 1988 Honda sedan and $2,062 in cash, they said.

Possible armed man sought

Police searched Alewa Heights this morning for a man who may have been armed with a gun. A helicopter assisted in the search. Police said the man may have been involved in a domestic dispute, but there was no evidence that any shots were fired.

Water break floods area on School Street

Some people in Kalihi were without water this morning after a 16-inch water main broke on North School Street between Kamehameha IV Road and Linapuni Street.

The break occurred at 4 a.m. It flooded driveways and closed one lane of traffic on North School Street. Crews had no estimate this morning on how long it would take to repair the main.

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