Yearbook M-R

Malia “The Haole Tita” May (Class of 1984)
– Sports: Captain of the Varsity Na Opio Paddling Team known as the Salty Wet Nuts
– Trivia: Malia is the founder of the underground Girl’s Fight Club – AKA the Nutty Titas. We would take polaroid of fights and stick them up in the makai girl’s bathroom where all the titas and the jocks hung out.
– Favorite Music: The Cure, The Clash, The Kinks and C & K
When not paddling or scrapping Malia could be found cruising Ala’s, partying at Manoa, Kanewai and Tantalus Lookout and slam dancing at Maryknoll Dances.
Malia Powers
I’m in 6th grade at Kukui school (Iolani). My dad is Justin Bret Monsarrat Powers, also a KHS grad. One of my all time favorite hobbies is hula. In fact, my Kumu Baine Kia is going to be in the Hawaii 5-O TV series. I play tennis and take an acrobat class called Samahdi. Its the silk rope that you can hang from the ceiling or sometimes a tree, and do really neat tricks from.
Marc “Buckwheat” Orbito (Class of 1992)
– Activities: Z-Cavaricci Club – Founder, We LOVE Neon – Treasurer, Nuts for Vanilla Ice – Secretary, Nuts Who Appreciate Female Nuts – Sgt at Arms, Cross Country, Monobrows R Cool, Rifle Team, National Honors Society
– Voted Most Coconut Filipino of the Year (1991)
– Current Occupation: Governor Pat Jameson’s office, IT Slave
– Trivia: Instrumental in getting the now infamous “Bird to Da Max” series of books published. “Bird to Da Max” and its follow-up “First Time Bird for Haoles” has sold over 2 gajillion copies world-wide since its release in 1996.
Marci “Akamai Okole” Black (Class? Yes, VERY Classy)
President Debate & Drama, captain women’s body surfing, winner of “Stairway to Heaven” speed climb, female lead in the Nut Hut Theatre productions of”South Pacific”, “Rascals in Paradise”, & “Pearl Harbor”, voted “Best Bartender”, “Most Likely to Travel the World”, “Hostess with the Most-EST”

Mari Williamson (Class of 1964)
– French 1,2,3,4 (Tahiti, here I come!)
– Dancer (Rock, hula, ballet – just don’t step on my toes!)
– Don’t tell my elemakule I talk dakine lidis cuz he no send me Manoa and I stuck here forevah! Or that I put on makeup in Home Room, or wear bikini on the North Shore.
– Goal: Manoa 1 year, UOP 1 year, keep going EAST till I get to Tahiti
– Elvis, please come back! I want your autograph!
MaryAnne Coelho (Class of 1961)
– Treasurer, Senior Class
– Yearbook Photography Editor
– Glee Club
– No Sports (All my motor skills are gross.)
I was the one always late for school because I took the bus from Hauula. With all that time for studying on the bus, I made Honor Society in my senior year!

Matthew “Wopsican” Morici (Class of 2002)
– Sports: Varsity Water Polo, Varsity Swimming
– Awards: Three-time winner of Kukui High’s Most Charming Smile Award.
– Trivia: Although it has never been proven, Matthew is thought to have been responsible for the 2001 incident known as “Nutgate” in which rival Dillon High’s varsity swimming pool was completely drained and filled with Kukui Nuts.
– Yearbook Quote: “Real Nuts wear speedos.”
Merle Gornick (Class of 190something)
– Psychology Club (Geckophobiasanonymous)
– Flying Nut concert & marching band clarinetist
– Girl’s Flying Nut Varsity Basketball
– Boy’s Varsity & JV Basketball Statistician
– Boy’s Varsity & JV Baseball Manager
– Girl’s Intramural Basketball Flying Nut
– Free Throw Champion
– Voted most likely to need Lasik Surgery
Currently: Working hard at play and raising five rescued canines. Lesser known fact: The Kukui High School Mascot was modeled after me.
Merry Lee Corwin (Class of 1960)
– Extracurricular activities: Junior Prom Committee (and didn’t the gym look nice that evening?), Yearbook Committee, School newspaper: The Nut House, cheerleader, guitar club, student council. I was in the Social Club, but resigned when our advisor told me my idea for MakaBook, a bulletin board where everyone could tack up notes with their news, would never work.
– With Louis “Kukui Louie” Silva, voted most dedicated to KHS.
– Sports: JV holua (kukui nut oil sliding)
– Current: Alumni Committee: Kukui Hui
Michael A. Sullivan (1984-1986)
I was the tall haole kid, heads above the rest. I was the Sports Editor of the school paper, The Fighting Nut and the originator of the still used today photo editorial page called “The Nut Shot”. I was also a member of the photography club, Golf team (10th grade) and unofficial bodysurfing team. Today I’m still doing photography for Island Sports Media as their Photography Editor. The Kukui Nut High experience stuck with me I guess. I also run my own business as well called Sullivan’s Eye Printing & Photography, where I still get to do publishing for a number of clients around town. On the family front I finally tied the knot with my wife Nadine and have a 6 year old son, Brandon Kaleiali`i.
Mike Gordon (Class of 1976)
Ah who could forget the homecoming bonfire that went so tragically wrong on that cool October evening. All those kukui nuts hanging above seemed like a good idea at the time but the burning building did inspire the Fighting Nuts to victory. And it also destroyed all the records in my file that were associated with the VW bug scrambling incident on The Mound.
Mike Spain
I was part of the Home School program cause of to many surf sessions. Also was voted most likeley to become like Barry in Faith Yanagi song, cause I was deaf ear and never like listen. I wore surfshorts under my cap and gown for graduation. During my term at Kukui High, I was a very humorous guy. I hung with the Kolohe crew, and the best part was actually being the funny sensitive guy that girls love to have as a friend but not boyfriend! I drove a cool 68 volkswagon bus known as the yellow submarine. I went to all surf meets and also was sponsered by the surf shop “Choke Mokes”. Played some ukulele with the likes of braddah IZ, Peter moon and Jake was still in daipers but still used to broke my strings. I was very proud to say thet my best accomplishment at Kukui High was being the first student to say “Mikey Would Go”.
Nadine Lagaso (Of the AWESOME 80s)
Activities and achievements:
– Editor-in-chief and investigative reporter, Kukui High Courier. Uncovered the truth behind the bonfire incident of 1976
– Speech and debate team captain. Took KHS to the state finals by defending the social value of “Dallas”
– Scriptwriter and choreographer for the drama club production of “Saturday Nut Fever”
– Successfully lobbied for a course on savvy shopping to be part of the school curriculum
– Finalist in the “Best use of Spandex” competition at senior prom
Nadine parlayed her writing, investigative and speaking skills into a 20-year career in communications and public relations. In commemoration of her class’ 30-year reunion she plans a reprise of “Saturday Nut Fever” if she can convince the musical’s star dancer Kay Murazane and musical soloist Shawn Uesugi to sign on.
Nathan Kam (Class of 1995)
– Played bass in a rock band called “Insomnia”…yes, fo real…but left sophomore year to pursue my baseball career.
– KHS JV and Varsity Baseball Team (on team that made it to states for the first time in 20 years)
– Japanese Club
– Listened to a lot of heavy metal music…Metallica, Megadeth, Slayer, Ozzy
– Should have been a honor student, but wasn’t.
– Big into car audio… even though I could only afford the junk stuff.
– Hung out in the parking lot of Taco Bell and Pizza Hut a lot with friends.
Neal “Kamasato” Kasamoto (Class of 1980)
Went by many last names – Kamasato, Sakamoto, Kusamoto, Quazimoto – since nobody could spell, remember or pronounce “Kasamoto” correctly. Kotonk born in California and moved to Hawaii at age 6. Never learned to speak “bird,” like McGarrett.
– Float burning committee – set the Senior class homecoming float ablaze at Sandy’s after the game, creating a huge bonfire. Started the Fighting Nuts Sandy Beach bonfire tradition.
– Speech and Debate (only debate) club
– Captain of Tennis team – lettered 4 years
– Soft Tennis – lettered 3 years
– Heavy metal and rock and roll fan
Nicholas Augusta (Class of the Cool ’80s)
– Sports: Cross country, tennis, baseball and girl watching.
– Activities: Founder of the Kukui High Student Flying Club, Stock Investment Club, Student Fundraising Club, Audio Visual Media Club, and Kukui Under Classmen Advisor on how not to break school rules (written or otherwise). Still the only person in Kukui High history to arrive for class via an airplane.
– Yearbook quote- “Go Nuts! Cleared to land!”

Still considered by some school faculty as “notorious”, the founder of the Kukui High Student Flying Club was expelled in his junior year when he landed his father’s Cessna on the track infield during homecoming only to be reinstated and graduate with honors after the school administration concluded that there were no school rules saying that he couldn’t.

During graduation week he cornered the kukui nut lei market and in turn, sold them at a huge profit alienating his fellow classmates. It was later determined that all the profits gained from the kukui nut lei sale were to form the initial donation of what is now the schools largest scholarship program Kukui ‘O Hawai‘i. Each year Kukui High now holds it’s annual Kukui Nut Lei Sale in honor of that original sale to continue to add to the scholarship program.

Noreen “Nori” Tan (Class of 1982)
– Activities: Yearbook, Cheerleading, 1982 Home Coming court, Junior Prom court, Japanese Club President 1979-81, Bowling, Class President.
– Awards: Voted best dressed 1982. Received at graduation a Special award for cutting out of class the most 1979 Freshman year.
– Currently: Resides on Maui with 3 business offices as Bail Bonds and is a secret shopper! Maui’s second woman driver at Maui Raceway Park, 1982. I’ve been drag racing on Maui but just recently sold my car. Always on Facebook and Twitter.
Norma Jean Vasquez (Class of 1980)
– Drum and Bugle Corp
– Future Law Enforcement Women of America (FLEWAs of KHS)
– Hula Hahiko Club
Current Spouse: Angela K. Payne

Paul Dennett (Class of 1964)
I received top awards in journalism, drama, and music. Most of my professional career was in Los Angeles as a KNX NEWS RADIO reporter. I moved to Hawaii in 1993 and operated a couple of restaurants, until I became bored. I returned to broadcasting as a news anchor/reporter for KSSK and sister station KHVH in Honolulu from 2003 to 2008. I then became a national corespondent for FOX NEWS RADIO until 2009. Except for occasional consulting assignments, I am now semi-retired and love to take cruises with my Kukui High School sweetheart wife of 41 years. Grandchild Emma just started pre-school at age 4. (Picture of me was taken last year at Bonnoroo event outside Nashville where I was asked to put on a brief comedy performance for sponsor Butterfinger).
Paula Gillingham Bender
Activities: Library Club, Glee Club, musicals, Color Guard, swim team, Shakespeare & Company.
Intramurals: Kissed a boy under the stairwell freshman year; kissed a boy in the library between the reference and science fiction sections sophomore year; ran into the boys locker room after homecoming pep rally on a dare; kissed a boy back stage junior year; kissed a boy under the bleachers senior year. Wanted to kiss an English teacher but he was already dating another student two years older than me. But I still love the Canterbury Tales and Beowulf! I guess I still have a thing on guys who could school me. Haha. Oh. Wait.
Phil Abbot (Class of 1978)
– EXTRA CURRICULAR ACTIVITES: Guitarist for the rock band, Numb Nuts. President of the Kukui Nut Pounders Surf Club. Motto: school fo’ play…surf all day. Played kukui nut checkers with black & white nuts. But we nevah know wat fo’ do when we made king. So we quit.
– AWARDS: Won a Kukui Nut Necklace for Best Radio Show on KKUI. Played local songs from the popular duo Cecilio & Kukui and their hits, “Six O’Clock Nut News,” “I Am The Nuttier Man,” and “Highway In The Shell.”
– FAVORITE MOVIE: Grease starring John “Pistachio” Travolta and Olivia “Olive-oil” Almond-John.
– LOW POINT: Sent to detention for giving kukui nut laxative chewing gum to the class bully… Mario Macadamia-Acorn. (MMA)
– CURRENTLY: Program director and morning show co-host of Da Boloheads for KAPA-FM ( on the Big Island.
Pinky ‘skinny girl’ Yoshimoto (Ortal) (Class of 1995)
– KHS Cheerleader
– drama club
– yearbook photographer
– KHS Dance Team
– Voted most likely to gain a few pounds.
– HS Memory: Stalking Steve McGarrett, calling him and hanging up when he answered the phone, watching him in swim classes.
– What up to today: Seattle Sonics dance team for 2 years then came home to take over family photography business, gained a few pounds.
Randy “Power” Kami (Class of 1995)
– Co-Captain of the Curling Team, Glee Club, Yearbook Staff, Semi-Pro Wrestling Team
– 1st Team All-Division Punter, Most Improved Castrati, Most Likely to Suck Seed.
– 8 time Co-holder of the Inter-Island Tag Team Championship. Randy is now a fingernail model.

Ric Clavel (Class of 1965)
– Student Body President, 1964 – 1965
– Valedictorian, Senior Class
– Varsity Baseball
– Member, Drama Club

Rico Boy (Class of 1988)
-Activities: Baseball, Kung Fu Club, did morning announcements KHUI- Kukui High’s own High School radio station.
– Interests: DJ’ing underground parties, making mix tapes, sports and chasing Theresa Cruz 🙂
– Current occupation: Program Director of Ohana Broadcast Company, KDDB, KMKK, KQMQ, KPOI and Quiet Storm Host on 94.7 KUMU.
– Yearbook Quote: “When Rico isn’t on your radio, your radio isn’t really on.
Rodney Ines (Class of ’77, ’78 and ’77)
– Activities: Give Some Aloha Committee, Yearbook Staff writer, Pacific American Asian Club, Non-Math Club, Turn Key Club, Honorable Wo Fat Society, Pidgin Club
– Honors and Awards: Sergeant at Arms – KHS Bird Watchers Club, Club Motto “You speak bird, huh?”
– Sports: Varsity Basketball, JV Football (4yrs)
– Extra Curricular: Varsity Basketball Cheerleaders mascot, Lunch Wagon Monitor,
– Favorite quote: “If I could save a time in a bottle, it would be in a green one.”
Rosella “Princess” Shishido (First class, as always)
– Creative Writing Club.
– Wanted to be a Girl Scout but my dad wouldn’t let me. Ended up in “The Princess Club” where I reigned as Queen.
– Only member of KHS’ Hawaii Club.
– Drama Club wanna-be, but my voice amazingly disappears when I’m on stage.
– Won the “The Most Color-Coordinated Wardrobe Award” hands down every single year of high school.
– “Best Penmanship Award.”
ACTIVITIES: Hung out with the punk rockers for while until I realized I don’t want to be wearing black and safety pins every single day of the week.
YEARBOOK QUOTE: “I want to be in Hawaii 5-0 one day.”
WHAT AM I DOING TODAY: Was an introvert back then, and continues to be an introvert today. “Pretty darn introverted,” according to a test I took. Loved Hello Kitty back then, still loves Hello Kitty today … especially the one with the kukui nut lei.

9 thoughts on “Yearbook M-R”


    OK I stay waiting for my name to appear on the list of alumnus of KHS

  2. Mike Spain, you da deaf ear one that kept on kicking the back of my chair afta I wen slap your head cause the surf was up and the teacha made you stay afta school to clap erasers? Kolohe is right! Next time I going sit in the BACK of you! Maybe you should retract that Class of 84 comment. LOL. (get posted more fasta! ) lol.

  3. Good thing the new prosecutor neva grad from KHS. He wen lay off some good hard working prosecutors. I heard the prosecutors were working with Steve MaGarrett on several cases to reduce the kolohe crimes. Now what we going do?

  4. Wow, I don’t remember you in that punk phase Rosella…. Good ting cuz I’ve those sfaety pins can really be high maintenence.

  5. Ah, yes, “the VW bug scrambling incident on The Mound.” As a haole transfer student in the fall of ’77, I heard a lot about it . . . though not a lot of details. All for the best, I suppose.

    I did get a kick out of going home after my first day and when my parents asked me what I thought of my new schoolmates, I got to say, “They’re all Nuts. Every last one of them.”

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