We were shocked and saddened to hear of Alan Kang's passing. Alan played such a significant role in the lives of the Wahine volleyball players as they struggled and fought to lay a foundation for the incredible program it is today. He helped forge the beginnings of the first team in 1972, the same year as Title IX's passing. We are proud to feature parts of Alan's story in our film and to honor his work.
During our research we uncovered some incredible stories. One of our favorites of Alan has to do with the team's first AIAW National Championship in 1974. At the time, only state champions were invited to compete at the national level; however, no such state championship existed in Hawaii. So Alan said to Athletic Director Donnis Thompson, "Well, I guess we'd better create one!" And that's exactly what he did.
The Wahine became state champs through this tournament that Alan and Donnis cooked up (played on Kauai, I believe), and then they were off to the AIAW Nationals in Portland, Oregon. (This was December of 1974, and they lost to the giants of UCLA in the finals, becoming 2nd place. They were the first UH athletic team to be awarded any first national title.)
Alan's vision and creativity to create something that didn't exist so that these girls could have a shot at showing the world what they could do is a testament to his leadership and heart. It's an inspiration and we hope his place in the legacy of the Wahine volleyball program will be honored and remembered for years to come.
Our prayers and heart are with his family in this time.
Join the List