Personal Stories of Tragedy: Unimaginable Sorrow in Hawaii as Wildfires Take Lives, Becoming the Deadliest in Over a Century

by Ryan Lee
fokus keyword: Hawaii wildfires

This tragedy has marked the deadliest wildfire in the United States in more than a century. Below are the deeply personal and painful accounts of those who perished.


The Tone family, consisting of Faaso and Malui Fonua Tone, Salote Takafua, and her son, Tony Takafua, tragically lost their lives in an attempt to escape the roaring flames. Authorities discovered their remains on Thursday, in a vehicle that had been consumed by the fire close to their residence.

A statement from the family conveyed their overwhelming pain, saying, “Words cannot capture the immense grief we are experiencing.”

Lylas Kanemoto, a friend of the Tone family, tearfully acknowledged the painful reality on Sunday.

“We may have found some closure for them, but the overwhelming loss and heartache is too much for many to bear. We must come together as a community, holding each other close, and do everything we can to support our families, friends, and neighbors,” Kanemoto expressed to the AP via text message.

Kanemoto’s anxiety continues as she waits for news about her missing cousin, Glen Yoshino.

“Fearing the worst, we have yet to hear from him, though he would have surely reached out if he could. We’re holding onto hope but bracing for the most painful outcome,” Kanemoto shared.


Geoff Bogar, a retired fire captain, and his close friend Franklin Trejos, who had known each other for 35 years, initially remained in Lahaina to assist others and save Bogar’s property. As the fire rapidly approached on Tuesday afternoon, they realized they had to evacuate.

Both men retreated to their respective vehicles, but Bogar’s car failed to start. In desperation, he broke a window to escape and crawled to safety, where police officers eventually found him and transported him to a hospital.

Tragically, Trejos did not make it.

When Bogar returned to the scene, he discovered the skeletal remains of his 68-year-old friend in the back seat of his car, along with the body of his cherished 3-year-old golden retriever Sam, who Trejos had attempted to shield.

Trejos, originally from Costa Rica, had been a longstanding part of the Bogar family, aiding Shannon Weber-Bogar with her seizures when her husband was away. His presence brought joy and warmth to their lives.

“In taking him, God took a truly wonderful person,” Weber-Bogar lamented.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about fokus keyword: Hawaii wildfires

What families were affected by the Hawaii wildfires?

The Tone family, including Faaso and Malui Fonua Tone, Salote Takafua, and her son, Tony Takafua, were killed. Geoff Bogar lost his friend Franklin Trejos and his golden retriever, Sam.

Who were some of the individuals that tried to help others during the wildfire?

Retired fire captain Geoff Bogar and his friend Franklin Trejos stayed behind initially to help others in Lahaina and to attempt to save Bogar’s house.

What emotions are expressed by the community members?

The community members express indescribable grief, overwhelming loss, heartache, fear, hope, and a strong sense of unity and support for each other.

How were some of the victims found?

Some of the victims, such as the Tone family, were found in a burned car near their home. Franklin Trejos’s remains were found in the back seat of his car.

What makes this wildfire significant in U.S. history?

This wildfire has become the deadliest in the United States in more than a hundred years.

What were some acts of heroism described?

Franklin Trejos’s attempt to protect Bogar’s 3-year-old golden retriever Sam, and Geoff Bogar and Franklin Trejos staying behind to assist others, demonstrate acts of heroism.

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Micheal_K August 14, 2023 - 7:34 am

It’s times like this that make you realize how precious life is. The story of Geoff and his friend really got to me. We need to do beter as a society.

Sara Jameson August 14, 2023 - 6:50 pm

Such a heartbreaking read :'( Cant believe what these families are going through, may their souls rest in peace.

Linda's World August 14, 2023 - 9:16 pm

oh my God… the story of the Tone family is just too much. I’m in tears right now. How do they even cope with such a loss, Thoughts and prayers for everyone involved.

Rick89 August 15, 2023 - 4:57 am

This could have been anyone of us… Really makes you think. Stay safe people, and let’s work together to ensure this doesnt happen again.

Tom432 August 15, 2023 - 6:09 am

man, this is so sad…why arent we doing more to prevent this kind of tragedies, so many innocent lives lost…


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