Getting A Real Pick-me-up

Aloha Pamela,

My father and I were having lunch at Shirokiya. I went to the restroom and when I came out I did not see him. He has Alzheimer’s disease and is hard of hearing. A store employee assisted me by checking the men’s room, but no luck. Suddenly I saw him walking toward me with a woman. She said she noticed him following her and her mom as they left the store. She thought she’d better escort him back. I was so relieved and grateful for the kindness Jasmine had shown.

As I spend more time with my dad I’ve encountered so many people who take the time to assist him or share a positive greeting. As we left the store we encountered another family, the Lums, who prayed for his good health and well-being. Thank you to all the wonderful people who care about the elderly.

Sandi Saifuku Chang

Dear Sandi,

Public education on Alzheimer’s and dementia has created an awareness of the needs of patients and their families. Oahu Program coordinator of the Alzheimer’s Association-Aloha chapter Lisa Choquette has a few suggestions for caregivers.

“Responding to a situation like this one requires alerting people, particularly the police,” she says. “Keep a picture of your family member with you so you can show it to people. Remember what they are wearing so you can describe their clothing. We also work with the Medical Alert Safe Return Program, which utilizes patient bracelets with an 800-number. We would be happy to talk to families facing these challenges.”

The Aloha Chapter of the Alzheimer’s Association can be reached at 591-2771 or

Dear Pamela,

My husband and I went to a baseball game on the Punahou campus. It was drizzling, and I slipped and fell and could not get up. My husband tried to pull me up, but with the chairs and umbrella he was holding he could not. A group of girls saw me fall and one of them came over to help. In my embarrassment and pain, I did not turn around to see who had lifted me and I don’t remember ever thanking her for her help. I hope she reads this and accepts my gratitude for helping this old lady stand on her feet.

Irene Kobashigawa

Dear Irene,

“We send our best wishes to Mrs. Kobashigawa and appreciate her gracious expression of thanks,” says Carlyn Tani, Punahou director of external relations. “Our students are encouraged to embrace compassion and service in their everyday lives, so we’re pleased to know that the girls who helped Mrs. Kobashigawa exemplified these values. And we hope that we’ll see her at more of our baseball games!”

Dear Pamela,

Yes, you deserve APPLAUSE! Your letters make us believe how many good, honest people are out there. There are many heroes that give us honesty, beauty and hope. Thank you!

Dolores Beltran Hoose
Hawaii Kai

Dear Dolores,

The wonderful letters are from the recipients of the good deeds of others. The APPLAUSE goes to their good neighbors and the authors of these letters of gratitude.

Correction: The Executive Director of Islands Hospice is Dr. Michael Duick.