Age certainly is only a number, as Diamond Badajos is proving. For starters, she already has her life priorities in order. The ‘06 Mililani High grad is already a 12-year veteran of Universal Kempo Karate, and she’s gearing up to start her second year at UH studying broadcast journalism.
But what makes this Makaha resident a far cry from the stereotypical 20-year-old is her never-wavering affinity for her family.
That is why after her aunt Janel Tupuola was beaten to death with a rifle allegedly by an ex-boyfriend in the streets of Kailua earlier this year, Badajos took it upon herself to turn tragedy into a positive experience.
“When my aunty passed away in January, I knew I needed to do something to keep her spirit alive,” says Badajos. That something is a concert at Hawaiian Waters Adventure Park this Saturday from 7 p.m. to 2 a.m.
“Being a fan of live, local music and seeing the great response it generates from the public,” she says, “I thought that doing a benefit concert like this one would be the perfect compliment to her ambitious spirit.”
Luckily, the generous gene runs in the family. Hosts Da Braddahs are close family friends, and most of the night’s performers, including Simplicity, BET, Ilona Irvine, Crosswinds, 3 Scoops of Aloha, All Natro, Saffiah and Laga Savea jumped on board when word of the benefit spread.
“I couldn’t thank them all enough for going out of their way and giving us their time,” says Badajos. “Without the support of my family and help from the community, I don’t think I would be where I am right now.”
In addition to live entertainment, there will be food and beverage booths, games, a keiki zone and lots of prizes from sponsors Barefoot League, Local Motion, T&C Surf, Natural Vibrations, Bloodline, Katchafire and Skin Industries. There also will be ukuleles from Sonny D and Kamaka Ukulele up for grabs. (Water attractions will be closed.)
But possibly the best part about this nightlong party is that all of the money collected will be split five ways and put into trust funds for each of Tupuola’s children, Keali’i, 14, Trulyn, 3, JB, 2 (pictured with Badajos above), Malama, 10, and Angel, 8.
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