State briefs for January 18

Navy to name aircraft carrier for Pearl Harbor hero Miller

HONOLULU (AP) — The U.S. Navy is expected to honor a World War II hero when a new aircraft carrier is named for Mess Attendant 2nd Class Doris Miller.

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The announcement is expected to be made at Pearl Harbor Monday.

Miller was the first African American to receive the Navy Cross for valor.

Miller was recognized for manning a machine gun on the USS West Virginia and returning fire against Japanese planes during the Dec. 7, 1941 attack on Pearl Harbor.

USS Miller, a destroyer escort, was previously named in his honor.

“I think that Doris Miller is an American hero simply because of what he represents as a young man going beyond the call of what’s expected,” said Doreen Ravenscroft, a team leader for the Doris Miller Memorial.

An African American was not allowed to man a gun in the Navy in 1941, Ravenscroft said.

“Without him really knowing, he actually was a part of the Civil Rights movement because he changed the thinking in the Navy,” Ravenscroft said.

Two of Miller’s nieces are expected to be at Pearl Harbor for the announcement on Martin Luther King Jr. Day.

Family sues school over child’s death while kayaking

HONOLULU (AP) — The family of a 5-year-old boy who died on a kayaking excursion filed a lawsuit against the school that conducted the trip.

The family of Alaric Chiu filed the lawsuit Thursday against Mid-Pacific Institute citing reckless behavior and gross negligence leading to the boy’s death March 28.

The kindergartner was participating in the private K-12 school’s spring break day camp when he drowned off Kaaawa on Oahu.

“We trusted the school with our son, but instead they killed him. We do not want any other families to go through what we went through,” Lucius Chiu, the boy’s father, said in a statement.

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Camp counselor Maria Davis, 63, also drowned when the kayak carrying four people capsized.

Two other students escaped injury by clinging to the boat, which was designed for two people and was not equipped with life vests.

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