Aikau family members, still in shock, gathered this afternoon in Pauoa to grieve the deaths of Gerald Aikau, 42, and his 7-year-old son Reef. Police are investigating the deaths as a murder-suicide, pending the outcome of autopsies by a medical examiner.
Gerald Aikau, the nephew of famous surfer and lifeguard Eddie Aikau who died in 1978 attempting to assist the crew of the Hokule’a voyaging canoe, had been staying along with Reef in a cottage next to his aunt Myra’s home in the Aikau family compound.
Myra Aikau said her nephew Gerald had “family issues” and been seeking help with doctors. “I don’t know what happened,” she said.
Gerald and his wife, Katherine Bullock Aikau, were in the midst of a contentious divorce and she had temporary restraining orders filed against her estranged husband. According to one court document, Gerald said he was planning to enter a substance abuse treatment program in Palm Springs.
Court records also show that two other women had sought TROs against Aikau in 2003 and 1994.
But Myra Aikau said today at the family’s Pauoa home, “Gerald was a really good boy. He had so much problems and he tried to settle it by himself and I don’t know what happened …. He did this, but he was loved by all of us.”
Myra said his uncle Clyde Aikau discovered Gerald’s body hanging from a tree and tried to resuscitate him but was unsuccessful.
Clyde went into the cottage and found Reef and tried unsuccessfully to try to revive his nephew as well.
Police, who received a call from the house at 5:45 a.m., said both the man and boy suffered “multiple injuries” with the boy injured by a sharp object.
More than 20 close family and friends gathered this afternoon outside the home near the Yee King Tong Cemetery.
Gerald’s father Solomon Aikau said he wanted to thank friends who have been calling to pay their respects.