What is the Meipala Project?
Born and raised on the Big Island of Hawai`i, Mabel 'Meipala" Torres Ishii died at the age of 66 on September 6, 2003 in an auto accident on the Hamakua Coast. This project is to share recognition of her contributions to the Waikoloa Village Community as the Office Administrator of the Village.
Affectionately known as "Aunty Mabel" and later, First Lady of Waikoloa, she served the Waikoloa Village Community from the early days of the development. Today Waikoloa Village is a thriving community, thanks to the efforts of people like her.
In addition to her professional work, her calling card consisted of a warm welcome that included an unreserved hug of Aloha that many still say "was unforgettable."
She often put the needs and wishes of the Community and others before her own. Some of her own dreams never came true, as she was so devoted to the work and love of the Village. She made residents, visitors, and even strangers feel welcome, important, and special, as if they were her ohana (family).
Whether it was pushing for a new post office for the Village, programs for the keiki (children,) or simply listening to a concerned resident's problems, she was always "there" with compassion and grace.
We are collecting stories, photographs, anecdotes, and relevant information covering the years she worked in Waikoloa Village, with the hope of one day honoring her work within the Community. If you knew Aunty Mabel, please take a few minutes to send us your wonderful memories of her. If you didn't know her personally and know of someone who did, please feel free to share this website's information with them. We want to collect as many "Mabel stories" as possible.
Mahalo nui loa,
- Likeke "Ric" Bumanglag