In Memoriam: Mrs. Christine Wilcox

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In Memoriam: Mrs. Christine Wilcox

Chloe Kitsu, Kylie Butler, Jasmine Kamana`o

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On August 17, 2017, Nanakuli High and Intermediate teacher Christine Wilcox passed away at the age of 51.

Christine Wilcox came to Nanakuli High and Intermediate in the fall of 2003 and taught Middle School English for the first several years. She then joined the CSAP program in 2008 which developed into the `Iokaha Academy, a program that gave students a second chance to make up their credits so they would be able to graduate on time. She then taught Junior English and became the English Department Chairperson for a few years. She was going to be an Instructional Coach the year she became ill. 

I think a memory that I have of her is just about the kind of person she was. She had a good heart, she was kind, she always took into consideration how people felt.”

— Trina Ku Educational Assistant

“I think a memory that I have of her is just about the kind of person she was. She had a good heart, she was kind, she always took into consideration how people felt. Even when she wrote her emails she could be like thinking something, or be upset about something, but she always thought about how she could come across in a good way, a positive way. She made people feel appreciated. Somebody got a certificate for something, I can’t remember what it was, a certificate or an award. She was like oh no, she went and made every student in class their own certificate or their own award. It was personalized, it wasn’t just oh you’re getting this for whatever. She wrote something small for every student and she really made them feel important,” said Trina Ku Educational Assistant.

When she got sick, she had come to the school, it wasn’t last year but the year before. She came and she didn’t want to just leave without the kids understanding what happened. She had a meeting after school, in the library. She came and so that day she talked about what happened, she also brought her wigs.”

— Jewelynn Kirkland Teacher Auʻuliʻi program

My fondest memory of Mrs. Wilcox was when we started doing . . . the ‘oli’ about our place, Nanakuli and the mountains that surround it. When she got sick, she had come to the school, it wasn’t last year but the year before. She came and she didn’t want to just leave without the kids understanding what happened. She had a meeting after school, in the library. She came and so that day she talked about what happened, she also brought her wigs. You know, cause she had cut her hair, I thought that took a lot, for someone going through that type of thing. Even though it’s kind of sad it was touching. For her to be able to do that and share that with the kids. That same day she also requested that they do the ‘oli’ and that to me is something that is very near to my heart and to hers. But that day was something that sticks in my mind. So, the kids who came they just rallied around her and did the ‘oli’ proudly. That’s the fondest memory for me,” said Jewelynn Kirkland teacher in Auʻuliʻi program.

She and Melissa Scroggins (a former teacher) used to attend NHIS Band concerts and come and give me a lei after the concert. She and Melissa nicknamed me ‘bun bun’ and Christine would frequently say, ‘Hi my bun bun!’ Mrs. Wilcox worked extremely hard with her `Iokaha students in D building and she would stay late into the afternoon sometimes till 6:00 pm preparing lessons in her classroom. I would tell her, ‘Go home!’”

— Randy Vause Chorus/Ukulele Teacher

“She and Melissa Scroggins (a former teacher) used to attend NHIS Band concerts and come and give me a lei after the concert. She and Melissa nicknamed me ‘bun bun’ and Christine would frequently say, ‘Hi my bun bun!’ Mrs. Wilcox worked extremely hard with her `Iokaha students in D building and she would stay late into the afternoon sometimes till 6:00 pm preparing lessons in her classroom. I would tell her, ‘Go home!’ She and her brother, with one of the `Iokaha groups that she taught in 2012, built a model canoe about 4 to 5 feet long in 2012 complete with pictures of her and the students on the canoe. It is currently displayed at the University of Hawai`i West O’ahu campus. Christine was an excellent English teacher and a great friend. She became a sister to me. She loved NHIS and taught me to not judge others so quickly. This is what I keep in my heart!” said Randy Vause Chorus/Ukulele Teacher.

She was one of the few friendly people I met when I first came 8 years ago. She was always helpful, always polite, always kind. One of my most fondest memories of her was going to some teachers meeting in the back of a pickup. Well it was off campus and we hitched a ride in the back of a pickup truck.One of these off campus sites we went to. I just did what she said. I would have never got into a pickup truck. It was a lot of laughs.”

— Carol West Culinary Arts Teacher

The best thing about her is that she was dedicated to her students. She was the teacher who’d stay extra hours to help her students finish tests. She always celebrated little victories.”

— Kelekolio Roberts Japanese Language/Contemporary Dance Teacher

“I think when I came back to teach, was when I became very fond of her, as a teacher mentor. When I was first hired at Nanakuli, it was very difficult. It was really hard. But her and a bunch of colleagues made it very welcoming. As a knowledgeable experienced teacher, she was always a good resource to go to and ask questions. The best thing about her is that she was dedicated to her students. She was the teacher who’d stay extra hours to help her students finish tests. She always celebrated little victories. Whenever our students did good, she would always celebrate it. I think that’s so important for teachers at our school. If a student who usually doesn’t finish their project, finishes their project, she would always share news with other teachers publically. It’s really inspiring to see someone taking gratification. I miss her,” said Kelekolio Roberts Japanese Language/Contemporary Dance Teacher.

Christine Wilcox and her two children Lena Ann and Kāneali`i in the mid-’90’s.

The staff and student body of NHIS extend their thoughts and prayers to her family. Mrs. Wilcox’s spirit and belief in the students of NHIS will live on forever.

She is survived by her husband Ricky K. Wilcox; daughter Lena Ann Sullivan; son Kanealii (Tayzha) Wilcox; daughter Vraunwyn (Brian) Denny; son Sorin Wilcox; mother Esther Fernandes; brothers Henry (Stephanie) Williams, Dennis (Janet) Maele, Clifford (Tricia) Williams, Christopher (Laurie) Maele, Duke Maele and Bronson (Laverne) Maele; sisters Dorothea (Robert) Kaapana, Phoebe (Clifton) Sato, Tabitha (Kyle) Mizuno; grandchildren Loralei and Logan.