An awesome follow up to a great fishing story, 2012.

I had the great honor the other day speaking first hand to Keoni Honl, the little boy who in 1937 caught a huge ahi in Makaweli using his throw net! If you did not see this post, one of my earliest on this blog, find it here:

A great fishing story from Makaweli, 1937.

John Honl is now 83 years young. He indeed threw net in his childhood, and remembered that there was a newspaper article written when he caught the famous fish. He says he spent his younger years spear fishing around Oahu, then moved to Kona, Hawaii in 1957, and ran a charter fishing boat named the Kakina for around 20 years! He is now retired and collecting Hawaiian memorabilia.

Talking to him was one of the most exciting things to happen to me in my twenty years or so of dabbling in the Hawaiian-Language Newspapers.

Mahalo to you, Mr. Honl!


A great fishing story from Makaweli, 1937.

65 Pound Ahi Caught in Throw Net of Youth

This Fisherman Was Seven Years Old

MAKAWELI, Kauai, January 18—The hopes were in vain, of several sharks who followed behind an Ahi thinking that they’d have a meal, because the Ahi was caught in the throw net of a fisherman, seven years in age, at Makaweli, Kauai, at a children’s swimming spot, on the 12th of this month.

So that no one would doubt it, this child brought the tail of the ahi, and here it is now, hanging in the school room where he attends school.

The name of this child is Keoni Honl, the child of Dr. Honl of Makaweli, Kauai.

The size of the Ahi was 47 inches long, and 27 inches wide. This Ahi was caught by him in his tiny throw net.

Keoni described the capture of this Ahi in his throw net: the ahi thrashed about, even if it was tired from being chased by the shark.

Keoni was fishing at the shore of Makaweli, which has been a regular thing for him now since three years ago; when he saw that the Ahi was being chased by sharks, and that the Ahi was headed straight for the shallow area where children swim, he threw his net, but his throw missed; he watched once more, and when the time was right, he threw his net again, and the great fish was caught by the little child.

Fishing is his great joy. When he was small [haha], he tried swimming, and when he knew how to swim, he began to fish. When he was three years old, his parents gave him his own throw net, and with this he practiced until he was proficient at throwing net.

(Alakai o Hawaii, 1/21/1937, p. 2)

Paa Kekahi Ahi 65 Paona Ika Upena Hoolei Aka Opio

Ke Alakai o Hawaii, Buke 10, Helu 3, Aoao 3. Ianuari 27, 1937.