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I come from a typical Hawaiian family: if you didn't ask about the past, you weren't told. And if you did ask and got a reply, it was usually given with some reluctance and a look that said you were "ni'ele" (nosey). |
In the early '70s, I found my maternal grandparents' marriage certificate among my mother's keepsakes. I knew my grandpa was "hanai" (raised) by his paternal uncle and aunt - my mom and her siblings considered them "grandparents". But on the marriage cert, my grandpa's parents are people I had never heard of. And that's how it all began. . .I needed to know.
Today, my mo'oku'auhau (genealogy) on both sides includes more than 1,500 names. I know who the 'mystery' parents are; I know my grandpa's hanai mom was actually his half-sister; I know where my great-grandparents are buried. And because I know, my grandchildren and their grandchildren will know. I'm a firm believer in: "You have to know where you came from in order to know where you're going."
Thank you, FAG and fellow-contributors, for the information you provide and most importantly for the respect each memorial is given.
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