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‘The Warrior’ and UH part ways

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Vili Fehoko, "The Warrior," will no longer perform at University of Hawaii sports events, Fehoko and UH officials told the Star-Advertiser on Sunday.

Fehoko, costumed as an ancient Polynesian warrior, served as an unofficial mascot, mostly at UH football games, the past 12 years. He also regularly performed at some men’s volleyball games.

"I’m done, it’s all about family now," Fehoko said. "I appreciate the opportunity June Jones and Mike Wilton gave me and I love all the fans. And good luck to the new coaching staff. Many of them are Mormons like me and religion is very important to me."

Fehoko is popular with many UH fans. But the school received dozens of complaints about "The Warrior" late in the 2003 season stemming from physical incidents during performances at games with mascots and cheerleaders of other teams.

No serious injuries resulted from the incidents, but Fehoko was given stricter guidelines for his act.

Fehoko said he is looking forward to spending more time with his family, especially watching his two youngest of four sons play football.

UH officials said they now plan to try to come up with a new, official mascot for the school’s athletic teams.

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