Happy birthday to my Grampa Hono (Jono) Wihongi!
-hiding in the back of your pick-up just so I could go to work with you
-climbing on customers' roofs with you and you telling me to duck down so no one could see me
-taking me to Burger King to get a .99 whopper and then to Thriftys to get some icecream
-playing your uke while we sang to you
-hearing you tell stories from back home in New Zealand-Tabi and I hiding under the counter behind the stools while you whipped us with the belt-every time we laughed you whipped us harder til we cried haha (I think we were the only grandchildren who got the belt from you)
-you always cracking joke on Grama being Tongan
-stealing from your "candy stash" in your closet
-spending the night and wearing your "Consumer Services" t-shirts
-teaching all us grandchildren how to swim in your pool
-all your "pull my finger" jokes
-always having mints in your suit pocket at church
-your deep deep voice when you sing at church-we use to try and impersonate your singing haha
What I've learned from you...
-families are forever
-how to work hard
-how a man should treat a woman
-never use profanity
-to always trust in the Lord
-how to serve those around me and "give of myself freely"
-how to befriend people and make those around me feel welcomed and important
-always attend the temple regularly
-have a strong and immovable testimony of the gospel
Why I love you...
..because you first loved us...and you've showed us that every single day since we were born. You always want all your grandchildren around and if you could have it your way you'd have every single family living in your house...and garage haha. You have blessed me with my great heritage. I hold my head high because the same blood that runs through my veins runs through you and those before you. I love you because of everything you taught me and our family. Through your example you showed me how to always put the Lord first and have faith. You and Grama came to the America with nothing and through years of hard work and great faith you've established yourselves and the whole family. I love you because you are the Patriarch of our family and have honored your priesthood to worthily hold this position. I'm blessed and honored to have you as my Grampa and to have you still around so my son knows you like I know you.*
"Whanau mo ake tonu."