Thursday, September 16, 2010

Ken Duit

Ken Duit's family left Vietnam when he was 10 years old, relocating to St. Louis, Missouri. They moved one more time to Grand Rapids, Michigan before finally settling in Holland, Michigan where Ken grew up with his two brothers and three sisters.

Due to a bout of polio at the age of one which left him with just his left lower leg in good working order, Ken now walks with the help of a cane. It never stopped him from persuing his dreams though, and two days after graduating from high school in 2000, he arrived in Hawaii to attend school. He attended three universities at one time and earned his bachelor's degree in 18 months. He held numerous jobs to support himself. He was a taxi driver, an insurance salesman, a Cutco knife salesman, he sold Quixtar, he delivered grocery to the elderly, he managed a coffee shop, he twisted balloons in Waikiki, and more.

Ken is married and has a son and a daughter. He met his wife Keiko in an accounting class at HPU. He said that meeting her was the best thing that happened there. Ken has already come a long way since first arriving here, and now at the age of 28 he is the new owner of the Garden of Fortune in Chinatown. He is one amazing guy. He wants to call these photos the "before" pictures. I'll return later to shoot the "after" pictures after Ken has had time to actualize his vision. I can't wait.



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12 comments:

Erick said...

Quite an amazing guy! Great post, can't wait for the next.

jalna said...

Thanks Erick! Ken is a veeery amazing guy. I feel lucky to have met him.

Les said...

WOOOOOOWWW....I never would've guessed. I wanna go with you for the "after" pics!! How is it that through all that he's still such a SUPER nice and humble guy??

jalna said...

Les, thanks for bringing that up. I failed to mention what I soften-spoken, humble guy he is.

Randism said...

wow! amazing! no can wait fo da adda pickphaz!

Betty Townsend said...

Amazing story. Love the photos. The store is so bright and cheerful, a place a person would want to go in because its so welcoming. Can't wait for the continuation.

jalna said...

Rand, next time you're in the area drop by and tell Ken hi. He is so nice!

Betty, the place has great potential. It's at the corner of Hotel and Maunakea and has a lot of foot traffic.

jason.f.leong said...

Great post aunty!

Really interesting story and I hope he does well with his new business

Bkeeper said...

...amazing guy and store! - bkpr

jalna said...

Thanks Jason! Love you!

I agree Vince!

Geri said...

I used to go there every Saturday before starting work at Jungle Gems

jalna said...

WOW!