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HOME arrow EDITORIALS arrow Mel Pu'u: Waterman and Makaha Lifeguard
Mel Pu'u: Waterman and Makaha Lifeguard PDF Print E-mail
By: Stand Up Paddle Surfing Magazine   
Wednesday, 12 March 2008
It still blows my mind how fortunate I feel to have met with with waterman and Makaha lifeguard Mel Pu'u yesterday. Bill Ward and I had met Mel a few weeks ago and were stoked when he said he'd be up for talking story and making time for an interview. When we arrived at the lifeguard tower, Mel was still out on the water fishing in a one man outrigger. He came back to the beach wet and with a huge smile on his face. In an empy milk crate...3 good size papios and a big needlefish. Mel put the crate to the side where the bees and flies found the fish intersting. Brian Kealana asked Mel about putting the fish away and Mel told him that so long and they don't break the skin, they'll be ok...and the flies can't break the skin.

ImageMel sat on the tailgate of the truck behind the lifeguard tower, and with the Waianae mountain range in the background, Mel, Bill and I talked story for a few minutes before turning on the camera, and before we got started, the boys called over to Mel, "Hey, Uncle Mel, I think that boy's in trouble. Stuck on the rocks" They all chuckled like they've seen it a hundred times before. Mel jumped on the ATV, walked out on the rocks and guided the boy back to the beach. When he returned, the camera went on and Uncle Mel shared some truly heartfelt thoughts and reflections on everything from sufing Makaha as a kid, the first leashes, paipo boards, the first stand up paddling he saw many years ago, the development of the Kialoa Shaka Pu'u paddle, his experience at the Ku Ikaiaka, and more. There were plenty of laughs and good times. Mel is overflowing with aloha. Thanks for an awesome visit. We truly feel like we have a piece of history on tape and can't wait to share it. Much Aloha. -Nate
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