comscore Mel Kinney, who appeared in 'Five-0's' original credits, dies | Honolulu Star-Advertiser
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Mel Kinney, who appeared in ‘Five-0’s’ original credits, dies

  • SCREEN CAPTURE FROM THE ORIGINAL "HAWAII FIVE-0"
  • PHOTO BY DENNIS ODA
    In this file photo from last year, (l to r) William "Billy" Richards, Nainoa Thompson, Buffalo Keaulana and Mel Kinney welcome seven voyaging canoes in the Pacific Voyagers Fleet. Thompson and Kinney were on the inaugural return voyage back to Hawaii frlom Tahiti.

  • In this file photo from Oct. 21, 1996, Mel Kinney holdis up a cover shot of himself surfing a big wave. He once placed around 20th in the second Eddie Akau surfing contest.
  • STAR-ADVERTISER FILES
    In this file photo, Mel Kinney shows the place where he was filmed (next to this banyon tree by the fountain in Kapiolani Park) for the "Hawaii Five-0" opening sequence. He was watching McGarrett's car go down the street when the cameraman asked Mel's cousin (Rayner Kinney) if he could film him. The cameraman gave him $5.

  • In this Oct. 21, 1996 photo, Mel Kinney shows what he did when he posed for the opening credits of "Hawaii Five-0"
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Mel Kinney, whose boyish face was part of the opening credits of the original "Hawaii Five-0," died Tuesday after suffering a heart attack several days earlier. He was 57. 

An avid big-wave surfer and member of the original Hokule’a crew, Kinney was a set dresser in recent years, working on the ABC TV shows "Lost," "Off the Map" and "The River" as well as the motion picture "Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides," said his sister, Leimana Damate. 
 
Kinney had just come ashore at Sunset Beach after a surf session Feb. 1 when he was stricken, she said. 
 
"He had an undiagnosed heart problem," she said. "He was in perfect health. He came in and took a shower and sat down to talk with a friend and had a major cardiac arrest. His last memory was of Sunset."
 
Kinney was born in Waimea on Hawaii island but grew up in Waikiki. He was 13 when someone with a movie camera stopped the lad on his way to surf in Waikiki in 1968. The cameraman gave him $5 to film him, and Kinney didn’t know what it was for until he saw the series premiere of "Five-0," Damate said. 
 
If you blinked you could have missed him, but strangers continued to recognize Kinney, even decades later, as the boy from the original "Five-0." 
 
Services are pending.

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