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Hawaii Tribune-Herald   July 15, 1982
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Frank Kamahele
Hawaii Airport District Manager
1931 - 2012

Frank was born and raised in Puna and went to Pahoe High School. He graduated from the University of Hawaii in 1953. Frank then went on to fulfill his dream of being a pilot by joining the U.S. Air Force. He flew the KC-135 Stratotanker. 

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In 1958, Frank was part of the five man crew that broke the record for the fastest KC-135 flight from New York to London. Frank served in the U.S.A.F. for over twenty years. Upon his return to Hawaii, he continued his love of flying as a pilot with a local air tour operator.

It was1975, when Frank joined the State of Hawaii, DOT- Airports, as a ramp controller in Honolulu. He came back to the Big Island in1979 as the Airports District Manager. Frank resided in Hilo but spent a few days a week at the Kona-Keahole Airport to oversee the early growth of the rapidly expanding airport. 

Frank Kamahele was indeed the right man for the job.

Frank continued his role until his retirement in 1999.

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I had the pleasure of working with Frank during my leadership of Hemmeter Aviation, Circle Rainbow Aviation and the start up of Bradley Pacific Aviation. I always appreciated his many years of experience and assistance over those 15 years of working with him at both Hilo and Kona.

Tom Anusewicz

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