Uncle Benny Kai of Kahuku, has entertained thousands as an ambassador of Aloha for decades, but a recent diagnosis threatens the beloved entertainer’s life.
For over thirty years, he has strummed his ukulele and put smiles on guest’s faces at the Hawaiian village and as the host of the Lu’au at the Polynesian Cultural Center. His signature routine of playing his ukulele behind his head and even with his teeth, coupled with his Louis Armstrong impersonation, were always a crowd favorite.
When he was not on stage, he was sharing his Hawaiian heritage to the students of La’ie Elementary school and Na Kamalei preschool. The fun-loving kupuna taught music and the Hawaiian culture to his keikis with his characteristic zeal and enthusiasm.
Benny Kai is loved by many as a singer, musician, an entertainer, a teacher but, according to Olympic gold medalist and daughter, Tasha Kai, his most important role has been that of father, “Dad has always been My best friend, my role model, my superman but most of all he’s my daddy.”
Recently diagnosed with lymphoma cancer, this husband and father of 6 and grandfather of 9, has only slowed down just a little bit. Uncle Benny continues to entertain, but this time it’s from his hospital bed. He recently performed a rousing concert for doctors, nurses and fellow cancer patients at Queens Hospital.
A recent prognosis however, confirms that the beloved entertainer is in need of a crucial stem cell transplant in his urgent fight against lymphoma cancer.
Those who know and love him are saddened that, someone who has touched so many lives and reached out to so many, is now in need himself. It is no surprise then, that people from the Ko’olauloa communities and from across the globe have rallied together to support this community staple.
The Friends of Unko Benny Kai is a fundraising effort to help raise the needed money for a stem cell transplant. An upcoming benefit concert and fundraising event will be held at the Polynesian Cultural Center on May 31st, with all proceeds going to help Uncle Benny battle his life-threatening cancer. Those who wish to help financially can make donations at their local Bank of Hawaii branch to the Friends of Benny Kai Fund.
In the meantime, the affable entertainer and friend to so many, maintains a smile through the pain and continues to share his signature warmth and talent with all those he meets.
Who: Local entertainer, teacher and ambassador of Aloha, Uncle Benny Kai of Kahuku, diagnosed with Lymphoma cancer.
What: “Mālama a Kōkua Unko Benny” Benefit Concert and Fundraiser, to help fund a crucial stem cell transplant in Uncle Benny’s urgent fight against cancer.
When: Saturday, May 31st at 9:00am – 12:00pm. Featuring performances by Te Hamata, the Tonga Sisters, Weldon Kekauoha and Miss Aloha Hula 2014 and of course the Guest of Honor, Benny Kai.
Where: The Polynesian Cultural Center, 55-370 Kamehameha Hwy, Laie, Hawaii 96762, where Uncle Benny has been the Ambassador of Aloha for decades.
Why: Uncle Benny has given his life to touching other’s lives and making people smile with his unique charm and spirit of Aloha, and now friends and fans are giving back.
How: Those who wish to help fund his needed stem cell transplant may make a monetary donation to the Friends of Benny Kai Fund, at their local Bank of Hawaii branch, under the account number: 98551476
Public may purchase their donation-only tickets to the concert and fundraiser upon entry.
For media interviews with Uncle Benny please contact: Sherry Kahawaii 808 372 9589 or Cody Mafatu 808 679 7873