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Fall 2009

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Fall 2009 - Other News | Reunion News

Class of ’79 Gathers for 30th Year Bash

By Ernest Nomura ’79
Class_of_79

BACK ROW: Ron Lau, Brian Lum, Ronald Han, Rew Ikazaki, Paul Kennedy, Riki Ringor, Donn Ariyoshi, Jim Vandenberg, Alan Lee, Tom Reitmann, Gavin Feliciano, Reese Nakamura, Ernest Nomura, Bruce Fong, Rand Totoki, Ken Hayashida, Kevin Hori, Dennis Chen, Wayne Chang, Bill Sumner; FIRST ROW: Chris Swoish, Jeff Mori, Laeton Pang, Glen Kaneshige, Wes Tyau, Stuart Tsuzaki, Troy Miyasato, Aude Cabaldon  See more photos »
Members of the Class of 1979 celebrated thirty years of friendship, camaraderie, and Raider spirit over Alumni Weekend, July 31 to August 1. The kick-off event took place on campus at the 4th Annual Alumni Week Reception hosted by Headmaster Val ’67 and Mrs. Cynthia Iwashita. ’79ers attending the event included Wayne Chang, Bruce Fong, Dr. Kevin Hori (an ER physician in Washington state, who made his first-time-in-thirty-years return to the ‘Iolani campus), Glen Kaneshige, Charlie Kaneshiro, Paul Kennedy, Ron Lau, Brian Lum, Jeff Mori, Reese Nakamura, Ron Nishihara, Mark Noda, Ernest Nomura, Wendall Omura, Tom Reitmann (an IT business owner in Eugene, Oregon), Jim Vandenberg (a Lt. Col. in the Navy and current CIF Project Manager for the U.S. National Park Service based in Yosemite National Park), and Eric Wright.

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Ronald Han, Paul Seo, Armand Chong
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The cool summer evening was spent noshing on savory pupus and desserts and drinking plenty of beer and wine. Wendall’s storytelling of class members’ exploits defied the passage of over 30 years of time and age.

Over 30 members of the Class of ’79, including several from the mainland, attended the next evening’s Class Dinner, which was held at the Japanese Cultural Center, Manoa Grand Ballroom. Thanks to JCC Board member, classmate and Reunion Dinner emcee par excellence, Donn Ariyoshi, the evening was fun-filled and thoroughly enjoyable with good food, drinks and years of catching up. Attending the Friday evening event were: Aude Cabaldon, a graphic designer based in Redlands, California, Dennis Chen, Armand Chong, Gavin Feliciano, a public school teacher in Southern California, Bruce Fong, Ronnie Han, Ken Hayashida, Kevin Hori, Rew Ikazaki, in-house counsel for Sun Microsystems, Santa Clara, California, Glen Kaneshige, Paul Kennedy, Ron Lau, Alan Lee, Brian Lum, Troy Miyasato, Jeff Mori, Reese Nakamura, Ron Nishihara, Ernest Nomura, Laeton Pang, Tom Reitmann, Riki Ringor, Paul Seo, Chris Swoish, Rand Totoki, Stuart Tsuzaki, Wes Tyau, Jim Vandenberg, and Class Advisor William Sumner.
Thirty years, for many, is a lifetime. For those who attended the reunion weekend, and those of us who could not make it, thirty years simply mark the time we graduated from ‘Iolani School as high school seniors. It’s been thirty years to mature wisely and to mellow, to select career paths and to juggle family and personal commitments that occupy our daily lives. Thirty years in the making of life-long friends and classmates.
A special Internet appearance at the class dinner included Doug Bell, Jeff Chung, Kraygg Yasutome, and Lance Choy, who hosted the Bay Area reunion group at his home. To think that when we graduated thirty years ago, there were no cell phones or the “Internet,” and computer guys had to carry around those hole-punched IBM cards. Go figure.

Thanks to Glen Kaneshige, die-hard golfers in the class enjoyed 18 holes at the Prince Golf Course on Saturday morning. Glen Kaneshige, Ken Hayashida, Kel Kado, Ron Nishihara, Stuart Tsuzaki, and Oscar Peltier demonstrated physical resilience and determination to finish the day of golfing and, of course, the 19th hole refreshments.

Capping off Alumni Weekend and our 30th Reunion was the 14th Annual A Touch of ‘Iolani. Members of the class enjoyed reunion-year reserved seating near the wine bar and were centrally located for easy access to the many food stations. Enjoying the evening among the hundreds gathered at this annual event were classmates Paul Carson, Brian Chee, Rew Ikazaki, Charlie Kaneshiro, Paul Kennedy, Alan Lee, Troy Miyasato, Reese Nakamura, Ron Nishihara, Ernest Nomura, Wendall Omura, Rand Totoki, Stuart Tsuzaki, Les Ueoka, Jim Vandenberg, and Eric Wright. Food, wine and classmates’ company and conversation made for a great and memorable evening.