March 28, 2017

Photo (c) TECH. SGT. Brandon Shapiro

KIALOA is proud to have Alfred Van Gieson as one of our 'Elele (Ambassadors). His story optimizes the culture, family and team spirit that flows through the long history of life 'on the water'. Not only is he a successful athlete, he's also a decorated Airforce officer.

Born into a family enmeshed in the “waterman” tradition of Hawaii and raised by an entire community built on a foundation of mutual support and responsibility, Master Sgt. Alfred Van Gieson has become an ambassador of Hawaiian culture through his success as a champion paddler. His heritage and upbringing has not only been instrumental in leading teams of paddlers to success on the ocean, but also in leading and motivating Airman on the flightline of Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam, Hawaii.

Growing up in Nanakuli, on the Island of Oahu, Hawaii, Van Gieson was told story after story about his father — a legendary outrigger canoe paddler. He heard of the many victories his father had amassed and the philanthropic good deeds that the Van Gieson name was known for. Young Al quickly learned that being a Van Gieson meant that there was never a lack of great friends, great family, great stories and great waves... 

Read the full story on Airman Online