WHT at 50: Kona hit by worst flooding in 40 years

  • Wednesday, Oct. 9, 1968 | Volume I, Issue XI

Wednesday, Oct. 9, 1968 | Volume I, Issue XI

ON THE COVER

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“Kona Flood Damage Soars Above $1 Million”

By Jim Langdon

Gov. John Burns is considering a plea from the County of Hawaii to declare Kona a State Disaster Area in the wake of the worst floods to it this section of the island in more than 40 years.

Damage estimates on both public and private property at mid-week had soared well above the $1 million mark.

Hardest hit by the floods, which struck Oct. 3 and 4, 1968, was the Holualoa area, where perhaps three-fourths of the damage to public property occurred.

County Engineer Ed Harada said that county roads alone sustained some $250,000 in damage.

Areas affected included Mamalahoa Highway, where a 100 foot by 40 foot deep section of roadway was ripped out by raging waters. Kuakini Highway and Alii Drive were also damaged, leading to road closures on the main three routes in Kona.

Magic Sands Hotel sustained heavy damage as did Yokoyama Store. Water ripped through the Kona Art Center, Door of Faith church and about 40 homes were flooded, resulting in evacuations and damage.

Notable headlines

“20,310 Ballots Are Cast”

A total of 20,310 votes were cast on the Big Island in Saturday’s 1968 primary election. This represents about 71.3 percent of the 28,489 persons registered to vote in the county. In 1966, 83.4 percent of voters cast ballots, or 22,674 of the 27,417 persons registered to vote. Notable names on the ballot included: Shunichi Kimura, Herbert Matayoshi, Harold Higashihara, Sherwood Greenwell, Dante Carpenter, Minoru Inaba, Ikuo Hisaoka, Frank De Luz III, Daniel Inouye, Patsy Mink, Neil S. Blaisdell, John D. Olsen and more.

“New Restaurant Slated”

Groundbreaking ceremonies are held for Huggo’s Broiler in Kailua, off Alii Drive near the Kona Hilton Hotel. It is headed by Hugo Von Platen and his wife, Shirley.

“Wildcats find Winning Ways”

The Konawaena High School Wildcats football defeat the Honokaa Dragons, 25-14, for the team’s first victory of not only the season, but since the program was revitalized after it stopped playing varsity football in 1932.

Weekly deals:

At Kamagaki Store: Rath bacon, 1 pound for $0.79; Kona Laid Eggs, dozen for $0.69; Gold Medal flour, 10 pounds for $1.29; and sugar, 10 pounds for $1.25.

KTA Superstores: Diamond Head beverages, 10 cans for $0.89; Diamond shoyu, one gallon for $1.69; and MJB coffee, 2 pounds for $1.29.

At Sure Save Super Markets: Colgate adult toothbrushes, four for $1; Kotex pads, 48 for $1.21; Hormel Spam, 12-ounce can for $0.49; and a five pound box of frozen 36/40 count shrimp for $6.25.

Five bedroom, two bathroom home in the Aloha Kona subdivision for $32,500.

One bedroom, two bathroom apartment, $190 per month.

Featured films:

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At Aloha Theatre: “The West Side Story” featuring Natalie Wood and Richard Beymer; and “Dead Heat On A Merry-Go-Round” starring James Coburn and Camilla Sparv.

At Kona Theatre: Noboku Otowa in “The Black Cat;” Charlton Heston in “55 Days in Peking;” and “Valley Of The Dolls” starring Barbara Parkins, Patty Duke and Paul Burke.