Hawai‘i Senator Passes Away Overnight

June 19, 2020, 1:18 PM HST (Updated June 19, 2020, 1:18 PM)
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Senator Breene Harimoto. PC: Hawaii State Legislature

Sitting Hawai‘i State Senator Breene Harimoto died Thursday night after a long fight with pancreatic cancer. Senate President Ronald D. Kouchi announced the news in a press release Friday.

Senator Harimoto served the residents of O‘ahu’s District 16 (Pearl City, Momilani, Pearlridge, ‘Aiea, Royal Summit, ‘Aiea Heights, Newtown, Waimalu, Halawa, and Pearl Harbor) for six years. He was 66.

“Breene Harimoto was one of the kindest people I have ever known, a man who truly cared about others,” said Senate President Kouchi. “He served his constituents with honor and treated everyone around him with kindness and respect. His legacy of public service will continue to benefit the people of Hawai‘i for many years to come. On behalf of the Hawai‘i Senate ‘ohana, we offer our deepest condolences to his wife Cheryl, and his children and grandchildren.”

Senator Harimoto served as the Vice-Chair of the Transportation Committee and was a member of the Public Safety, Intergovernmental, and Military Affairs Committee, as well as the Ways and Means Committee. He was the Senate’s representative on the O‘ahu Metropolitan Planning Organization Planning Board and was its Chair. He was also the Senate’s alternate representative on the Hawai‘i Interagency Council for Transit-Oriented Development and Hawai‘i Interagency Council on Homelessness.

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Prior to his election to the Senate, Breene Harimoto served on the Honolulu City Council for four years. He was chair of the Committee on Transportation where he championed rail, transit-oriented development, complete streets, smart growth, and health and safety issues.

The Senator was a member of the Board of Education for eight years and served two terms as its chairman. He is a former information technology professional and is a long-time community volunteer. He is co-founder and serves as Executive Director of the Pearl City Foundation/Momilani Community Center.

Senator Harimoto was a life-long resident of his district. He and his wife Cheryl are graduates of Waipahu High School and the University of Hawai‘i at Manoa. They have three adult children and three grandchildren.

Senator Harimoto was born on May 6, 1954. Memorial services are pending.

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