Sunset Sail for “Sir Hek”

UPDATE: Event photos added below compliments of John Bilderback:

All photos © 2019 John Bilderback

Polynesian Voyaging Society crew held a sunset sail on Hōkūleʻa and Hikianalia in honor of Māori navigator and waka builder Sir Hekenukumai Hector Busby, affectionately known as “Sir Hek,” who sadly passed away on May 11 in Aotearoa at the age of 86.

Nainoa Thompson

“Sir Hector Hekenukumaingaiwipuhipi Busby, pwo navigator, graduated by his teacher Mau Piailug, the great master canoe builder that pulled canoes from the native forests, has departed on his new, extraordinary great voyage that all great navigators do,” said Nainoa Thompson, pwo navigator and president of the Polynesian Voyaging Society.

The two canoes departed METC on Saturday, May 25, at 4:30 p.m. and sailed for a ceremonial flower scattering and time on the ocean for members of the voyaging community to share and reflect on the extraordinary work and legacy of Sir Hector.

“We all deeply feel his loss but we all have the chance to think back on the infinite amount of memories of how he enriched and strengthened each of our lives by the infinite amount of gifts he gave to so many,” said Thompson. “And to his family, in Aotearoa, from his family in Hawai’i we send all of our deepest love and aloha to all, as we celebrate the exceptional and extraordinary life that he lead, which enriched all of ours.”

To learn more about the life and legacy of Sir Hekenukumai “Hector” Busby and his special connection to Hawaiʻi’s voyaging community, please see the following links:

The story of Te Aurere:

Aurere Starcompass:

Kupe Waka Centre: Whare Wānanga Dedication (Dec. (3 min)

ʻAha Moananuiākea – Papa Hekenukumai, Guiding Kaumatua (6 min)

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