Working at the State Veterans Cemetery has special meaning for a Kaneohe man

The Hawaii State Veterans Cemetery is once again hosting Memorial Day events after a two-year pause.
Published: May. 30, 2022 at 4:01 PM HST
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HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - The Hawaii State Veterans Cemetery is once again hosting Memorial Day events after a two-year pause.

Dozens of avenue flags lined the streets. A tiny American flag blows at all of the graves.

Memorial Day takes weeks of planning. It was a big undertaking for general services supervisor Kaleo Texeira, who’s only five weeks into the job.

But Texeira has been to the cemetery for about a decade’s worth of Memorial Days.

“If I wasn’t working, I would be at the spot to my left here,” said Texeira, pointing to a corner of the cemetery where a small group of people sat beneath a tree. “That’s where my dad is buried. So we’ll be at his grave, enjoying the festivities here and enjoying the moments.”

In 2013, his father was buried at the cemetery. Keith Texeira served in the Vietnam War as a Boatswain’s mate for the Navy.

“He’s the kind of guy to go put a smile on your face while making you do stuff around the house,” said Texeira.

Kaleo Texeira said it was difficult when his dad died, but the workers there cared for his family.

“They helped us with that transition,” Texeira said. “The team here just really embraces you and you just feel like it’s an extension of your family.”

But now he honors his dad daily. It gives his family peace.

“Having somebody that you can come see every day is awesome,” said Josiah Texeira. “It’s great for him and for my papa, too.”

“I think it makes them feel good that they can keep his memory alive,” said Kekoa Texeira.

Kaleo and his Dad have always been close, and they’ll continue to be.

“It’s kind of nice driving past him and just having that moment like, ‘hey pops,’” said Kaleo Texeira. “I show him the shaka and just kind of give him my chicken skin. But yeah, he’s my best friend.”

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