The Kona 4th of July Parade was fun for the 19 participants and was well worth the $400 entrance fee which was good advertisement for the WH Republicans. America's Birthday is a Patriot's Day, and the Republican Party is associated with patriots, the Constitution, the Military and on the "Right" side. So what better day to stand up and be recognized.
Dave Buehler and Rick Thompson carried the WH Republican banner, followed by Bob, a Veteran in a wheelchair and WH GOP Vice Chair, Carol Brown, MD. Jeffrey Coakley's banner was on rollers, pushed forward by two beautiful young women: his nephew's wife Holly and their daughter, Keahi Coakley. Then came the flag bearers and strapping young men: David Ross held the big USA flag while Kekai Coakley and 6'8" Gabe Perez held Coakley signs and Keli'i Grothman waved the Hawaiian flag.
A little red Porsche Turbo Cabriolet convertible, owned and driven by Gunner Mench followed the entourage. Lani Eugenio sat on the passenger side waving and twirling the two-sided image of Coakley. GOP District 7 House candidate, Jeffrey Coakley, sat on the back of the classic car, which boosted Coakley's rating to 90% favorability. There were cheers, whistles, shakas, waves and screams as Gunner revved the engine. Were the squeals of delight for the candidate or for the car?
Then came the Nagata family: Scott, his wife Angela, and two sons under ten. The Republicans ended with a little dune buggy driven by a couple who joined the group and stuck "Coakley" stickers on their vehicle.
What was exciting about this parade was that THIS IS THE FACE of HAWAII, and hopefully, this will be the face of Hawaii's Republican Party. We had the older generation, but we also had the youth and children, multi-racial men and women supporting a candidate and representing the Republican Party.
The WH Filipino Club was the float after us. Turns out that the leader... Domingo, had run for office last year as a Republican. We need to connect and put him in some leadership position. Also, good to include more Veterans and youth.
Good showing at the Parade. Mahalo to all!
District 7 Chair