A man described as a well-known member of the community is being mourned and his grandchildren fighting for their lives after a fatal head-on collision Sunday on the Big Island.
61-year-old Miles Nakanishi of Hilo was the driver of an Cadillac Escalade that was hit head-on by a red pick-up truck, driven by 65-year-old Frank Rosol of Hakalau, that crossed the centerline on Hawaii Belt Road Sunday night.
Nakanishi and Rosol were pronounced dead at the scene.
The 61-year old owned a concession stand at Hilo Airport and ran his own catering company.
His former boss and co-worker, the Principal at Hilo High School, described his dedication to his entrepreneurial spirit and his community.
"People knew him both at the concession stand at the airport and several other things," said Principal Robert Dircks. "When we were looking for lunch to be provided at the school, he had his own company that would help provide meals and things. A lot of people knew him from that standpoint as well."
He recently retired from Hilo High School, after over 10 years of service there, where he worked as an intern coordinator, helping students prepare for the work force.
"He was a very thoughtful man," said Hilo High School Principal Robert Dircks. "But his whole purpose here at Hilo High School was to work with the kids and get them ready for career readiness."
All four of the passengers in Nakanishi's Escalade, including his 11-year-old granddaughter and 6-year-old grandson, were severely injured in the crash.
Both grandchildren were transported to medical facilities on Oahu in critical condition. There is no word on their status or recovery.