Keliʻimaikaʻi: good hearted; kind

The younger and full brother of Kamehameha I, he was a popular ruler of Hāna, Maui and earned the name “good-hearted chief.” During his boyhood he and Kamehameha were together in ʻĀwini, Pololū Valley, on the island of Hawaiʻi. It was there that they were cared for and instructed by their relatives Chief Naeʻole and Chiefess Kahaʻōpūlani. He served as a member of Kamehameha’s council of chiefs and helped to campaign the unification of the Hawaiian islands under Kamehameha’s rule. He is also known as Kalanimālokulokuikapoʻookalani. He protected the rights of the common people, and while he lived in Kīpahulu and Hāna there was no sugar cane broken off, no potatoes dug up, no pigs roasted. The common people loved him and called him “The good chief” (Keliʻimaikaʻi) in praise of his kind deeds, and that is why his life was spared when he was about to be made a prisoner in war. He was assigned by Kamehameha to preside over the sacrificial rituals at the dedication of Puʻukoholā heiau. With his wife Kiʻilaweau, Keliʻimaikaʻi was the father of a son named Kaʻoa Kekuaokalani, who was given the custody of the war god Kūkāʻilimoku by Kamehameha. Keliʻimaikaʻi and another wife Kalikookalani had a daughter named Kaonaeha, whose daughter, Fanny Kekela, was the mother of Queen Emma. Keliʻimaikaʻi died in 1809 and is interred in the Kalākaua crypt at Maunaʻala.

Keliʻimaikaʻi was the name suggested for the student classroom building, primarily because there was some underlying character traits surrounding the name and that it would reflect positive character-building incentives in the students and staff.

Kū Kilakila ʻO Kamehameha, Donald D. Kilolani Mitchell, Kamehameha Schools, Honolulu, 1993.

Ruling Chiefs of Hawaii, Revised Edition, S. M. Kamakau, Kamehameha Schools, Honolulu, 1992.