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Nisei Week’s Chun to Be Honored This Saturday

A remembrance will be held Saturday, Jan. 19, for longtime Nisei Week volunteer Marian “Aunty Marian” Chun at Los Angeles Hompa Hongwanji Buddhist Temple, 815 E. First St. in Little Tokyo, from 10:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. Attire is Hawaiian casual.

“Aunty Marian” Chun

Chun passed away on Oct. 29, 2018 at age 89.

Chun was honored in 2017 with the Nisei Week Inspiration Award for her decades of volunteer work and as a role model who demonstrated how to welcome strangers and friends with open arms of love.

“Marian Lin Kum ‘Aunty Marian’ Chun was a living example of Ohana or family love. She believed ‘all people are nice and they deserve to be taken care of,’” the Nisei Week Foundation said in a statement.

In 1973, her husband, Uncle Bobby, became the festival’s official hospitality host. Visitors and court members from Honolulu, San Francisco and Seattle were entertained during the festival. As the number of guests increased, so did the number of members for the Hospitality Committee. Without hesitation, Chun’s home was open to everyone. It was common for Auntie Marian to have more than 50 people in her home.

At the break of dawn, Auntie Marian prepared the annual breakfasts for early arriving guests and two days later opened her home again for the traditional aloha dinners.

Chun was born on Aug. 29, 1929, in Honolulu. At the age of 20, she moved to Los Angeles and worked briefly for the federal government. Later, she worked for the Hospital of the Good Samaritan. During her 34 years there, Chun was a payroll supervisor who ran a well-organized department.

Besides overseeing her co-workers at the hospital, her home became a weekly gathering place for her family and friends. People would drop by to “talk story,” dance the hula to the strumming of the ukulele, and eat her delicious home-cooked Hawaiian comfort foods.

Aunty Marian is survived by her daughter, Aulani Chun, and son-in-law, Paul Baumhoefner; grandson, Michael Sapp Chun; three sisters in Honolulu, Lillian Texeira, Evelyn Titcomb and Margie Cornelia; brothers, Clifford Chang and Stephen Vasquez; numerous nieces and nephews. She was predeceased by her husband, Bobby Chun.

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