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Showing Some Class

This started as an ode to my classmates, the 400-plus members of Roosevelt’s class of 1982, many of who I’m looking forward to seeing at our “Lucky 21” reunion this March. I had a pretty funny intro started, too: The year was 1982. Michael Jackson wasn’t too weird, yet …You get the picture.

But I ended up here in this hospital bed getting intravenous antibiotics to fight off a weird infection. And it made the whole point of the column I had started earlier a lot more clear. One of the first things I asked my husband to bring (besides clean clothes!) when I was suddenly hospitalized, was a copy of a book, that I and more than a thousand members of my church had committed to reading every day for seven weeks: The Purpose Driven Life by Rick Warren.

In it, Warren convincingly makes the case that each of our purposes on earth is built around service. In fact, the first sentence is a real eye-opener for many of us: “It’s not about you.”

And it’s not about measuring up to the rest of the world either. Many of my classmates have found professional and commercial success: Our photogenic Vice President Bobby Driskill has starred in a number of local commercials; I’m told the class treasurer, the former Theresa Tsuruda, has earned something called ‘double diamond’ status in the Amway organization; Oahu firefighter Jason Katada cofounded the Sex Wax company; John Ishimi is an owner of the Bedroq club; the former Susan Arakaki is now designing specialty items for her family’s Menehune Mac brand business. There are doctors, lawyers, engineers and accountants. The list goes on and on. But I find, in light of Warren’s book, the real hero has been the reunion chair Catherine (Terakawa) Callejo, who has soldiered through the reunion-planning process while becoming pregnant, then giving birth to her second child in late January. During the day, she’s a teacher at the Voyager School in Kakaako. Now THAT’S service.

There’s another really funny story about the (illegal) fireworks at our graduation ceremony, but I’m out of room. Go Riders!

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