State briefs for April 4

WWII veteran receives Congressional Gold Medal

HONOLULU (AP) — A 101-year-old World War II veteran from Hawaii has received the Congressional Gold Medal for his service.

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James Lum on Wednesday received the highest award of national appreciation for distinguished achievement at Kuakini Health System’s Hale Pulama Mau Auditorium.

Lum is one of about 375 Chinese Americans from Hawaii who have been given the medal for their service in the war.

He is one of about 50 Chinese American recipients who are still alive.

“There are not many World War II veterans still living to share their experiences,” said Melvin Lum, one of James Lum’s three sons. “In our eyes, our dad is our hero.”

Eight of Lum’s family members attended the medal presentation. It was the first time in more than a year that James Lum was able to see so many of his family members in person because of the coronavirus pandemic.

Lum was a corporal and auto mechanic in the U.S. Army.

He served from December 1939 to October 1945 with the 298th Infantry, Hawaii News Now reported.

Lum received the medal as a part of the Chinese American World War II Veterans Recognition Project.

Visitors to Kauai get discount with 2nd virus test

HONOLULU (AP) — Visitors to the Hawaiian island of Kauai will receive a discount card for local businesses if they voluntarily take a coronavirus test three days after arriving in addition to their required test before travel.

The Kokua Kauai Card program will begin on Monday, when the island reenters the Safe Travels Program, which allows people to avoid quarantining if they can show a negative pre-travel coronavirus test.

The card will feature a QR code that links to a site with discounts and incentives offered by local Kauai businesses.

About 60 Kauai businesses, hotels and restaurants are participating in the program.

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“We wanted an additional layer of security in addition to what Safe Travels provides,” said Mark Perriello, the executive director of the Kauai Chamber of Commerce.

The program will be conducted by a joint partnership between the Kauai Chamber of Commerce, the Kauai Visitors Bureau and the Kauai chapter of the Hawaii Lodging and Tourism Association.

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