McDermott’s Message

midweekSeptember 9, 2015

Honoring Living Treasures of Ewa Beach

Recently, I had the privilege of honoring several living treasures of Ewa Beach.

The first was Sister M. Davilyn Ah Chick, who was chosen as Catholic Clergy of the Year by the Knights of Columbus Council in Ewa Beach.

Sister Davilyn has long been a leader and role model in Ewa Beach and the wider community. Born in Hawaii, she is the daughter of the late John Sr. and Dorothy Amy Ah Chick and one of seven children. She is grateful to her family because her parents, brothers, and sisters nurtured her to live life to the fullest.

For over forty years, Sister Davilyn has served in the Franciscan order. She is blessed to serve God’s people as a friend, religious educator, leader, and administrator. She is a volunteer locally, regionally, nationally, and internationally. Sister Davilyn is presently the Principal at Our Lady of Perpetual Help School in Ewa Beach. In this capacity she continues to touch lives on a daily basis and is performing in an extraordinary fashion.

Represenatative McDermott, Senator Espero, Sister Davilyn, Mr. Stan Maria, and Councilman Ron Menor

Left to right:  Representative Bob Mcdermott, Senator Will Espero,  Sister M. Davilyn Ah Chick, Stan Maria, and Councilman Ron Menor.

The other honorees we celebrated were Billy and Cely Villareal. They have long been leaders and role models not only in Ewa Beach but in the Filipino community as well. Their example of family, community, and stewardship is a beacon for all to follow.

As of 2006, Billy has been the tireless President of the United Pangasinan of Hawaii.  Since his ascendancy to this role, the association has reached greater heights. The Villareals open their home monthly to others, thus providing the Filipino elders a place to gather and talk story. Billy and Cely work as a team, and due to their hard work the membership has quadrupled because of their proven leadership and unwavering dedication.

Billy and Cely are American Patriots.  He is a former sailor, a hero who spent almost 30 years in the US Navy, while Cely served as a Navy wife, which is a job as hard as being in the Navy itself. Cely often mentored the younger wives on Navy life.  The Villareals have more than done their part in serving their adopted country.

All of these individuals are Ewa Beach treasures who enrich all of our lives on a daily basis. We are blessed to have them as our neighbors!

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Sabers JV Basketball Team Rallies To Help Neighbor

Clean up McDermott

McDermott’s Message …Rep. Bob McDermott

midweekDecember 2014

Lourdes Torres didn’t know who to call for help. Her yard had become seriously overgrown. But at her age, she no longer had the energy to take on the rigorous work of climbing, trimming and hauling the clippings from her yard.

“It is just too much,” said Torres when she called me. “You are the only person I could think of calling who might be able to help me.”

Although I normally don’t see yard service as part of my legislative job description, I always try to help my constituents, no matter what their problems might be. I have been known to clean roadsides, haul old mattresses, corral stray dogs and even guard crosswalks. I also know a great network of community volunteers who help their neighbors in Ewa, and I can always count on them to be there when called upon.

I knew the answer was to call District 50′s Ewa Beach Lions Club. So I picked up the phone and called the president, Kurt Fevella. He immediately contacted his friend Joe Atinma, who in turn rounded up some of his JV basketball players from Campbell High School.

The team of community volunteers was hard at work when I arrived at Torres’ house. With hedge clippers and other yard work paraphernalia in hand, everyone was hacking and hauling away. There were overgrown hedges, dead branches and weeds. The yard was indeed overgrown and needed a lot of attention, but the team met the challenge with gleeful hearts. Mrs. Torres was so happy to have her yard in order.

As we finish celebrating this holiday season, it’s reassuring to know that when the call goes out, the Ewa Beach community is full of members who always stand ready to help their neighbors. I’m proud to be part of this community, and I’m thankful for generous people like Kurt, Joe and the young high school boys from Campbell who are willing to step up and do the right thing. In Ewa Beach, this spirit of caring and giving is not just a holiday ritual, it is a daily practice!

From Ewa, let us be among the first to wish you Hau‘oli Makahiki Hou!

Know Your Stuff When It Comes To Alarm Salesmen – McDermott’s Message

midweekMidweek   November 05, 2014  – McDermott’s Message

Recently, our Ewa neighborhoods have been swarmed with door-to-door alarm salesmen.

This seems to happen every summer.

My office has gotten several calls, and I have been asked to help some folks get out of some bad door-to-door alarm contracts, so I thought some advice in this matter would be useful.

First, please remember: If it seems too good to be true, then it probably is!

Here’s one scenario. You answer the knock on the door and find two nicely dressed gentlemen, who say they just installed a terrific state-of-the-art alarm system with the very latest technology in your neighbor’s house, and they thought that you might be interested, too.

These part-time college summer hires seem to be experts on security systems. They explain that the alarm system is a terrific deal, offering free installation with a small activation fee.

“You won’t want to miss this great opportunity,” says one of the salesmen. “Since we are already in the neighborhood, can we come in right now and show the system to you? Otherwise, you will miss out on this fantastic deal,” says the other salesman with a smile.

Second, these state-of the-art alarm systems, in most cases, are offered by door-to-door salesmen whose companies are located on the Mainland, with no local offices in the Islands.

These companies simply subcontract the installation done at your house.

The contract you sign is generally assignable, and is often sold to another company so they can get money quickly to pay for equipment, salespeople and installers.

Third, if you decide to purchase a system from a door-to-door vendor, you will have to give these total strangers your Social Security number and bank account information.

They will do a credit check and set up automatic deductions from your bank account, right then and there. Yikes!

After you sign a contact, if you stop paying for any reason, these companies will have little sympathy for you and simply will report a negative entry to your credit report.

Eventually you will have to settle with the company holding your contract.

My recommendations are the following: Check with Better Business Bureau for unresolved complaints; ask the salespeople if they have local offices and then verify the physical location; execute a Google search and do your own research to ascertain if the company is reputable.

If all of the above points are met, and the deal is right for you, then begin negotiations.

Be wise. Otherwise, you may end up a very unhappy customer.

McDermott oleloState Rep. Bob McDermott represents District 40 (Ewa, Ewa Beach and Iroquois Point). He can be reached by calling 586-9730 or emailing repmcdermott@capitol.hawaii.gov.