Within the last few weeks, three people from the Kahuku football community died.
Former Red Raiders player Benji Kemoeatu — the brother of former NFL players Chris Kemoeatu and Ma‘ake Kemoeatu — died at age 24 of a massive heart attack while at a construction job site on Oahu last week, according to trusted sources close to Kahuku football.
The Kemoeatu family has had a rough go of it lately, the Red Raiders dedicated last season to them after Ma’ake retired from pro football to donate a kidney to Chris.
Feso “Juice” Malufau, a former Kahuku defensive lineman who was a Red Raiders assistant coach under former head coach Reggie Torres and also an assistant with the Laie Park team in the Big Boys youth league, died at age 44 on Aug. 13. He had been in a long battle with cancer, a source said.
Former Kahuku player and assistant coach Telefoni Aumua died at age 64 in a Utah hospital. He lived in Laie and was on a trip to the mainland. He also spent time as an assistant coach at Radford.
Services for Malufau were held last week. Services for Aumua are Sept. 4 at the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Laie. A source said services for Kemoeatu will be Sept. 5, but a site is not known at this time.
Hawaii Prep World contacted Torres, who knew all three, for some comments:
>> “Benji was a great player who could move well for a kid his size, but he was also big teddy bear. Everybody loved him and his death at such a young age is just heart-breaking.”
>> “(Malufau) was a position coach for me, but his biggest contribution was developing a lot of the Big Boys kids who went on to play for Kahuku.”
>> “(Aumua) played before me and he coached as an assistant with me. He was well-respected in the community and taught at Kahuku for many years.”