benbohane-2085

Desert Islanders

Ben Bohane embeds with Pacific island troops in Afghanistan ‘There we go, island sounds and a smokin’ barbeque” says Sgt. Eddy Siguenza as we draw closer to a bunch of heavily tattooed islanders prepping food as electro soul pulses from an ipod. This could be just another cruisy Pacific island scene – except we are …

Melanesian leaders pose for a photo before going into their

MSG summit in Noumea

THE MSG – CELEBRATING 25 YEARS By Ben Bohane Leaders gathered from PNG, the Solomon Islands, Vanuatu, Fiji and New Caledonia for the annual Melanesian Spearhead Group (MSG) summit, which this year was hosted in Noumea. It was a celebratory affair, marking 25 years of this important sub-regional organization that grows in strength and influence. …

Zane Schlemmer, who served in a U.S. Army parachute regiment, jumped into France on D-Day. He volunteers at the Hawaii State Veterans Cemetery.

Lifetime Of Service

By Floyd Takeuchi The call from the magazine art director was intriguing: could I photograph a World War II veteran who was still serving his country, and his fellow vets, by being a full-time volunteer at Hawaii’s State Veterans Cemetery. That alone would have made it an interesting story, but it got better. This veteran, …

Dancer-Choreographer Becky McGarvey in Hawaii.

A Growing Passion

I’m attracted to the process of creativity, and trying to portray in photographs the ephemeral qualities that are part of the creative process. That has been the goal in on-going personal project, the documentation of a friend, Becky McGarvey, a young modern dancer and choreographer. I’ve followed Becky’s creative development from the recital hall to …

Sunrise over Eneko Island, Majuro atoll in the Marshall Islands. Eneko has a small eco-resort operated by the locally-based Robert Reimers Enterprises.

Essays from an Atoll

Majuro atoll, capital of the Republic of the Marshall Islands, holds a special place in my heart. It is where I was born and raised, and memories of growing up on a small atoll with fewer than 2,000 other people, raised on the murmur of the ocean breaking on a distant reef, remain clear today …

Sokehs Rock, which dominates Kolonia, Pohnpei, in the Federated States of Micronesia.

An Island In Transition

One of the unheralded stories of change and development in the Pacific Islands is the transformation of Pohnpei, one of four states in the Federated States of Micronesia and home to the sprawling nation’s capital. A lovely high island, Pohnpei was until recently a sleepy backwater, little changed in the past 40 years that I’ve …

Warrior1

An American Hero

Before he joined the U.S. Army in 2008, Brendan Marrocco wasn’t sure what he was going to do with his life. But the Army gave him purpose and discipline, and he envisioned a career serving his country. Then came Easter 2009, when he was serving in Iraq. An explosive damaged the vehicle Brendan was driving, …

American Samoan dancers wait for their turn to perform at the 10th Festival of Pacific Arts in American Samoa.

Pasefika: The Festival of Pacific Arts

Pacific Islanders have gathered for centuries to celebrate their cultures through song and dance. But no event is as stunning as the Festival of Pacific Arts, which since 1972 has attracted tens of thousands of Oceania’s best dancers and cultural practitioners. Sponsored by the Secretariat of the Pacific Community and held every four years in …

Hula teacher Kanoelani Rosenberg instructs teen-age students in the proper position for a dance.

Halau – A Life In Hula

There is obvious beauty in hula, the indigenous dance of the Hawaiian Islands. Hula is internationally known, an iconic symbol for a beautiful chain of islands. But hula is also a quiet revolution, the source of pride, discipline and dedication in all things Hawaiian for those who are drawn to the dance’s beauty and power. My initial curiosity …

A Xavier High School student and her teacheer during an English class.

School On The Hill

One school has produced most of the Micronesia-region’s leaders over the past 60 years. Xavier High School, originally started by the Jesuits as a seminar but quickly converted into a boarding school to meet the demand of Micronesians, remains the Western Pacific’s leading high school, and the only institution that still serves islanders from the region’s three independent nations …