David Ka‘aumoana McKenney (1965-2011)

David Ka‘aumoana McKenney joined the Polynesian Voyaging Society apprentice navigator program around 1992. In 1995, he and Keahi Omai was navigator on Hōkūle‘a for her voyage from Hawai‘i to Tahiti. Ka‘au also served as a crew member on Hawai‘iloa’s journey to Juneau Alaska that year.

David Ka‘aumoana McKenney

Ka‘au was born in San Francsico on August 16, 1965. He moved with his family to Nu‘uanu, O‘ahu, in 1975 and attended Punahou School. After receiving his BA in Hawaiian Studies and his MA in Education, he taught Social Studies at Punahou School.

Ka‘au also taught Hawaiian studies and Polynesian voyaging and navigation, subjects dear to his heart.

In honor of his contribution to voyaging and education, Nainoa Thompson asked the McKenney family for permission to give the name “Ka‘aumoana” to the star Pherkad, which circles Hōkūpa‘a, the North Star, in Hawai‘i.