WAIPIO (HawaiiNewsNow) - Hundreds of people bid a final aloha to beloved Hawaiian musician John Koko of the Makaha Sons.
They gathered for funeral services at Mililani Memorial Park and Mortuary Friday. There were no speeches at the services. Instead, many of Koko's fellow Hawaiian singers and musicians performed while friends, family, and members of the general public who were touched by Koko's music came to pay their respects.
The upright acoustic bass player died June 25 while awaiting a heart transplant. His infectious personality and smile won him many fans all over the world, and that's how his loved ones honored his memory.
"John was always a happy person, and the family said what he wanted was everybody to be happy," said Koko's Makaha Sons band mate Moon Kauakahi. "Even when he left, he wanted everybody to be happy, because this is what he was."
"He's so special and yet, now he's gone you know? His spirit is going to live with and within all of us," said entertainer Melveen Leed, who was among the performers.
"We did several island tours, so I have many many good memories and I'll keep them close to my heart," said singer and kumu hula Kawaikapuokalani Hewitt. "He was a fabulous person, a fabulous entertainer and he will be dearly missed by all of us in Hawaii."
There will be another public viewing Saturday from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Koko will be buried at Mililani Memorial Park at 1:30 p.m.