The Story of the "Kohola" Healing Sculptures

 

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Kohola, the Hawaiian Life Ahupua'a sculpture.


 

"Hawaiian Life" Ahupua'a Sculpture 

   A vision is being revealed to create and consecrate a Kohola sculpture from one of the ten Port Chicago logs to be placed in Hawaii.   This exhibit will feature the marine, animal, plant and bird life in five representational climate and terrain elevation zones of the traditional ahupua'a land schemes of ancient Hawaii where great continuous swaths of land from the ocean (makai) all the way up to the top of the mountains (mauka) were managed on a preplanned sustainable basis to produce the foods necessary to support the original Hawaiian groups of peoples who inhabited the lands. 

 

 

Sam Hart (above) of the Pacific Islanders Cultural Association grinds smooth the DNA surfaces carved by Shane Eagleton using chain saws.   Hundreds and perhaps thousands of images of native Hawaiian plant, animal, bird and marine life will be carved into the surfaces of the DNA by teams of youth in Hawaii under the supervision of eco-carver Shane Eagleton before the log is placed permanently. 

 

   Jon Larson, born and raised in the Hawaiian Islands, applies a periodic coat of linseed oil to protect the surface from the elements while it is being stored in the San Francisco Presidio, the original carving site provided under special use permit by the U.S. Parks Service. 

KohoLa - "Seek the Light"

   KohoLa is the Hawaiian name for whale.  Early Hawaiians were inspired by the mother humpbacks pushing their keiki (calves) toward the surface (toward the light - Ko-ho-La) for a first breath of air. We used it in the early stages of the project as a spiritual idiom for "To Seek the Light (Truth)" and to describe all the various activities which were taking place under the umbrella that was originally called the Kohola Healing Poles Project and has since come to be known as the Kohola Sculptures Project

The above painting by Bay Area eco-artist George Sumner called "Bali Hai" depicts a mother Humpback whale gently pushing her newborn keiki calf toward the surface (towards the light) for its first breath of fresh air off the Na Pali Coast of Kauai. 

   

 

    The planned stages have begun for placement of Kohola through gifting by a team of Hawaii based people including the Iliahi Foundation of Hawaii, Punahou School, and college students of Hawaii, The Hawaiian Life Apuaha'a Kohola sculpture exhibit will mirror ancient Hawaii where a system of land management developed that mirrored the natural landscape in which nature itself was honored and respected. 'Aina, the Living Earth, is the ancestor who provides sustenance. The natural resources defined the boundaries of the ahupua'a.   This significant land division was generally wedge shaped and stretched from the ocean to the uplands. Kailua, in the Ko'olau-poko, was considered one of the richest ahupua'a on Oahu. It had plentiful rainfall, rich forests, hundreds of streams, sheltered valleys, broad flat lands, protected shores, and rich ocean fisheries. Malama is the necessary stewardship to care for these resources and to share with others. As the water flows down the mountain, it nourishes food plants. Fishing in the upper streams for shrimp and hihi-wai (limpets) varied the diet. Kalo, ki, and mai'a (taro, ti, and banana) were grown downstream near the na hale (houses). As the water reaches level ground near the ocean, water is diverted to fishponds.  Placement at the Waikiki Aquarium will be within the historic Waikiki Ahupua'a tract.

   The Hawaiian Life sculpture (above) depicts a Hawaiian humpback whale Kohola  moving through the ocean with the water streaming off its head and back. The photo below shows glass wall murals hung at Honolulu International Airport depicting the ocean waves of Hawaii which is a perfect metaphor artistic tie into this image of Pacific Ocean waters streaming off the back of the Kohola humpback whale moving through the ocean off Hawaii.

Currently stored at the San Francisco Presidio, the partially completed sculpture awaits its journey to Hawaii and its new life as the Kohola Hawaiian Life Ahu'pua'a Sculpture at a final location yet to be determined, and perhaps in the central lobby of the Waikiki Aquarium where it will greet all visitors to the aquarium and allow young children and students to make colored chalk etchings of the various forms of the endangered Hawaiian species.

 

 

 

 



 

 

Lemon grass burns inside a California abalone shell in the traditional Native American consecration ceremony of the first Kohola sculpture dedicated to the Children of the World in 1997.  

 


 

 

The One Voice 9-11 Healing Totem sculpture dedicated September 5, 2002 at New York City's Bronx Zoo where it will greet the one million children and adult visitors to the Bronx Zoo each year.

 



Introduction

"Kohola Sculptures" is a series of projects supported by the Jon and Karen Larson Family Foundation, a non-profit 501c3 public benefit foundation with interests centered in California and Hawaii.  The foundation sponsors community activities which all have spiritual, cultural healing, or ecological restoration themes in their heart and soul.  Over the past seven years, under the umbrella of the Kohola Sculptures Project, many different individuals and non-profit organizations (each with its own vision, mission and priorities) worked together in a burst of creative synergy to create a series of healing sculptures carved from old growth previously fallen logs which range from several hundred to over 1,000 years old.

Ten of the logs are immense Alaskan yellow cedar logs salvaged in 1997 from the U.S. Navy's former Port Chicago Naval facility on the San Francisco Bay where they were installed in the 1920's and used as floating and underwater caissons at the former west coast ammunition storage and trans-shipping facility.  Three others are previously fallen old growth redwood logs acquired from private land owners near San Francisco.

Each Kohola sculpture is consecrated for a specific healing purpose.  Each is a model for spiritual healing which honors the cultural and faith traditions of the peoples and the plants and animal life worldwide.   

#1-2  Two sculptures have been completed to date and are installed out of doors, one at the Bronx Zoo in New York City and the other at the PAL (Protect All Life) ranch outside San Francisco.

#3-4  Two more honoring the First Peoples of California are completed and on public display at the Golden Gate National Parks Conservancy's Presidio Native Plants Center.

#5-6  Two more are partially completed and on public display in the San Francisco Presidio awaiting consummation of the vision to relocate one to Honolulu, Hawaii and the second one to Japan where they will be completed and installed at appropriate locations. 

#7  One of the logs is stored at the Protect All Life tree recycling center in Oakland, California prior to being completed and installed at the Interfaith Center at the Presidio of San Francisco.

#8-10  The remaining three Port Chicago logs are stored at Fort Ord near Monterey, California. They will be used by the California Workforce Investment Board's youth training programs of the One Stop career training centers in special youth mentorship training programs modeled after the successful One Voice 9-11 Healing Pole project.

 

 

  • One Kohola Sculpture was completed in 1997 and 1998, 
    • Children's Sculpture

 

  • Two were completed in 2000, 
    • Protect All Life Sculpture
    • Marine Life Bench

     

  • Two were completed in 2002.
    • One Voice 9-11 Healing Pole - New York City
    • One Voice 9-11 Healing Pole - California

     

  • One was completed in 2010.
    • The First Peoples of California Healing Totem - Indian Canyon, San Juan Bautista/Hollister, CA

     

  • Two are currently in the build stage.
    • Thousand Cranes Youth Sculpture
    • Kohola Hawaiian Life Ahupua'a Sculpture

     

  • One is currently in the planning stage.
    • Interfaith Healing Pole

     

  • Three Port Chicago logs were acquired by the California Workforce Investment Board for future youth training programs with yet to be determined themes. Possibilities include:
    • United Nations
    • Port Chicago
    • Africa
  • A Park is in the vision stage.
    • Restoration Park  


Kohola Project Inspiration

 

 

 

The project was first inspired when the Hawaiian Spiritual Delegation came to San Francisco in June of 1995 to participate in the United Nations 50th Charter Interfaith celebration where a call for a new United Religions Initiative was first heard by a confluence of representatives of the worlds faith traditions.

The arrival of the Hokule'a sailing canoe from Hawaii into San Francisco Bay the same week was another key event that brought together Hovey Lambert of the Pacific Islanders Cultural Association, Shane Eagleton, world renown eco-sculpturist, Marcus Von Skepsgardh of the Protect All Life Foundation, Melissa Nelson of the Cultural Conservancy, Paul Chaffee of the Interfaith Center at the Presidio, Pat Friedel of the California Indian Museum and Cultural Center, Jon Larson of the Jon and Karen Larson Family Foundation, and other individuals and groups who related to the healing mission.  

Their shared visions and creative energy were further inspired by dreams for a better future in the new Millennium fast approaching. The people and the historical time of the new millennium together created the historical imperative within which the sculptures project was born.  

It was originally designated the Kohola Healing Poles Project honoring the common ties of the many Pacific Islanders at the core of the project including Jon Larson, the Pacific Islanders Cultural Association, and Shane Eagleton.  The project name was subsequently changed  to the Kohola sculptures project to more broadly honor and represent the diversity of the backgrounds of all of the individuals and non-profit organizations that have come to be involved.

 


 

The Healing Mission

 Land - Ancient Trees               The First Peoples                    Oceans - The Great Whale

 

The healing missions of the Kohola Sculptures is expressed through three living symbols (life forms) of the indigenous plants, animals and peoples of the world;

The whale (kohola) and the old growth redwood and cedar trees, ancient animal and plant species which have co-existed for over 40 million years on this planet, are threatened with extinction as are the history and collective wisdom of the indigenous "First Peoples" of the Earth. This brings meaning and importance to the healing mission expressed in each of the Kohola Sculptures.  

The stories of the great whale, the great California redwood and Pacific Coast cedar trees, and the spiritual traditions and cultures of the  indigenous peoples of California, Hawaii and the Pacific region, are re-told through these Kohola Sculptures in a respectful and reverent manner which seeks to heal ancient wounds and restore new life, respect and hope to the living and future descendants of the indigenous peoples, plants and animals of the world.

 


 

KohoLa - "Seek the Light"

KohoLa is the Hawaiian name for whale.  Early Hawaiians were inspired by the mother humpbacks pushing their keiki (calves) toward the surface (toward the light - Ko-ho-La) for a first breath of air. We used it in the early stages of the project as a spiritual idiom for "To Seek the Light (Truth)" and to describe all the various activities which were taking place under the umbrella that was originally called the Kohola Healing Poles Project and has since come to be known as the Kohola Sculptures Project

The above painting by Bay Area eco-artist George Sumner called "Bali Hai" depicts a mother Humpback whale gently pushing her newborn keiki calf toward the surface (towards the light) for its first breath of fresh air off the Na Pali Coast of Kauai. 

 


The original Kohola (KohoLa) Carving Team

The Kohola team gathered at the Kohola carving site in the Presidio of San Francisco on Earth Day in February of 1997 to receive the ten Kohola yellow cedar logs salvaged from the former U.S. Navy base of Port Chicago, 40 miles northeast of San Francisco.

 

Presidio of San Francisco

 


The Carving Logs

 

The Port Chicago Yellow Cedar logs

A group of ten unique logs was salvaged by the Kohola Sculptures Project in 1997. The logs range from 300-1,000+ years old each, average 30 feet long, and weigh 2-3 tons each.  They were brought by rail to San Francisco in the early 1920's from the Pacific Northwest to serve as submerged and floating caissons at a former shipyard which was converted to became the Port Chicago Naval Magazine, a U.S. Navy ammunition loading base 40 miles northeast of San Francisco.  

These ten logs all withstood the immense blast July 17, 1944 caused by the explosion of two ammunition ships being loaded with munitions for the war in the Pacific.  320 men lost their lives in the tragic explosion, the largest single loss of civilian lives during the war. This history is important because it feeds the healing and restoration themes of the Kohola Sculptures.

The logs were removed from service 60 years later in the '80's, stored on a remote mudflat on the San Francisco Bay, and forgotten.  Fifteen years later, destined to be sold for firewood, the marine salvage firm Specialty Crushing sold them instead in 1997 to the Kohola Sculptures Project team. 

On Earth Day in 1997, they were transported by truck to a special carving site within the Presidio of San Francisco obtained by the Kohola Project under a temporary "special use permit" from the U.S. National Park Service.   

Historical information about the exact background of the Kohola logs is not 100% certain. But we have researched all available information and present it herein as our best judgment and opinion about the sources, ages and history of each of the Kohola logs. 


 

The Redwood logs

Two Kohola healing sculptures, the Childrens Sculpture and the Marine Life Bench, and the original PAL KohoLa Whale sculpture carved by Shane Eagleton, the artistic director of the PAL Foundation, were sculpted from three old growth previously fallen redwood trees from the coastal areas of northern California. 

The whale shown below was sculptured from the redwood log shown above.  It is carved from a single 5 ton 40 foot long 2000 year old abandoned redwood log found by Shane Eagleton at a defunct sawmill in Mendocino County, California and transported to San Francisco in 1995 where it was carved by Shane and the PAL Foundation into the PAL Kohola Whale sculpture shown below. 

"Mother KohoLasculpture by Shane Eagleton for the PAL Foundation on display at Crissy Field on San Francisco Bay at the Pacific Islanders Cultural Association's Aloha Festival in 1995. The sculpture was given its name "KohoLa" by the Hawaiian Spiritual Delegation to the United Nations 50th anniversary in San Francisco in 1995.

 

 



 

Photos of the Kohola Sculptures:

 

Thousand Cranes Youth Sculpture

Pacific Islanders

Hawaiian Life Youth Sculpture

Children

Protect All Life

 Marine Life

 One Voice 9-11

      Below are some photos of seven of the sculpture projects.


 

"First Peoples of California" Healing Pole Sculpture

 

The First Peoples of California Sculpture shown above at the carving center on public display at the Presidio Native Plant Nursery.

It was transported to Indian Canyon near Hollister, California where it was raised in Ceremony in 2010

as a permanent welcome sign to all who travel to Indian Canyon to share spiritual healing that helps us all.

 

"First Peoples of California" Healing Pole Sculpture

Indian Canyon  - San Juan Bautista/Hollister - California

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

"Thousand Cranes" Sculpture

 

The "Thousand Crances" sculpture currently resides at the Presidio Native Plant Nursery waiting plans to be taken to Hawaii to be completed by teams of youth from California, Hawaii and Japan before it is transported permanently to Japan.

It was present and originally consecrated at the first United Religions Initiativeconference at Stanford University in June of 1999 shown above which was the initial convocation of a large group of representatives of faith traditions from throughout the world who gathered to organize a United Religions organization inspired by and modeled after the success of the United Nations. 


 

Pacific Islanders - Kohola Sculpture

The Pacific Islanders PICA Sculpture above honors the healing wisdom of the indigenous peoples of Hawaii and the Pacific Islands. A protective coat of oil is being applied to the surface of the PICA Pole which was sculpted into a Hawaiian humpback whale by Shane Eagleton, the Pacific Islanders Cultural Association, and the Kohola carving support team of organizations from throughout the San Francisco Bay area. 

This Pacific Islanders Sculpture was carved in 1997. The Pacific Islanders Cultural Association, a San Francisco based non-profit organization seeks to preserve the Hawaiian and Pacific Islands culture in California and to extend a welcome hand to Hawaiians and all Pacific Islanders relocating to the Mainland.

We plan to bring the PICA Sculpture home to an appropriate permanent public place in Hawaii for viewing by all Pacific Island peoples and visitors to these islands. It honors all peoples of Hawaii and the Pacific Islands on behalf of the PICA organization, the Pacific Islands peoples and the indigenous peoples of northern California, and the Hawaiian Spiritual Delegation to the UN Interfaith gathering in San Francisco in June of 1995 when the United Religions Initiative vision was born.

 

The Kohola PICA Sculpture

 

On display at the Interfaith Center at the Presidio

 


 

 

First Children of California

This healing pole is dedicated to the memory of the First Children of California including the children of the first people to inhabit the San Francisco Bay Area whose families are referred to collectively as the Ohlone.

 

 

The Childrens Sculpture under construction, being carved from a 150 year old California redwood tree that had fallen over on private land in a windstorm.

 

 

Eco-sculpturist Shane Eagleton explains the mission of the Childrens Sculpture to the participants at the consecration ceremony in Half Moon Bay.

 

 

Bluebird Woman Elayna Reyna of the San Juan Bautista American Indian Council puts her own healing energy into the Childrens Sculpture.

 

 

The Childrens Sculpture on display at the world headquarters plaza of Levi Strauss in San Francisco.

 

San Francisco Presidio Mural

A notable artistic feature of the Interfaith Center at the Presidio Chapel is a large wall mural painted in 1935 by Victor Arnautoff who was recognized as a leading artist of the period. The mural depicts a historical pageant related to the founding of the Presidio, the peacetime activities of the Army, and the first establishment of a Christian religious tradition on the lands of the Presidio, all in the first years of immigrants from Europe to the area. 

The mural also depicts the First Peoples of San Francisco, the Ohlone, in peaceful encounters with the recently arrived religious, military and business elements migrating to the area in the 1800's, just as the ancestors of the Ohlone First Peoples migrated to the area many thousands of years earlier and lived on these same lands.

Learn more about the Ohlone / Costanoan First Peoples of the San Francisco Bay Area.

 


 

Protect All Life

PAL Protect All Life Healing Pole in Half Moon Bay

The Protect All Life Healing Pole was carved by Shane Eagleton for the PAL Foundation. from one of the ten Port Chicago logs.  It is mounted vertically on PAL property on the coast in Half Moon Bay below San Francisco, as an "acupuncture needle for Mother Earth".


 

Marine Life Bench

Marine Life Bench

The Marine Life Bench contains representative symbols of the marine life that lives within the triangle of San Francisco Bay, the Farallon Islands, and Monterey Bay.  200 representational marine mammals, fish, reptiles, invertebrates, birds, and tidal marsh and dune plants are being carved into the surface of the bench.  

It is planned as a gift to the Golden Gate National Recreation Area for placement at an appropriate location within the GGNRA national park system, perhaps even the Crissy Field Visitor Center where visitors can sit and rest along the pathway while exploring the bird and plant life in the restored area. It is currently used within the Presidio Native Plants Nursery in the main gathering center.

 

 


 

 One Voice 9-11 Healing Totem Sculpture

The One Voice Healing Pole

The One Voice 9-11 Healing Totem sculpture above was gifted in the memory of all those lives lost in the 9-11 tragedies.  It was transported cross country from California and unveiled and erected within the New York City Bronx Zoo in September, 2002 on the first year anniversary.

 

The One Voice 9-11 Healing Pole with a representation of New York City Council members, Bronx Borough political representation, local Jacoby Hospital officials, New York City police and firemen, school teachers, Monterey student carvers, California Workforce Investment Board members, administrators and management of the Bronx Zoo, and surviving members of families who lost loved ones in the 9-11 tragedy.

 

News Release: 8-12-2002



 

How the Kohola Sculptures are created

The following series of photos shows the process of converting salvaged old growth logs into completed healing poles. These pictures were all taken at the special Kohola carving site at the San Francisco Presidio.  

 

The Carving Process

The logs are sand blasted to remove mud and loose bark. Rotted out sections are removed with special chain saws.  

Purposes and healing themes for each log are discussed by project members.  

Prior to carving, each log is consecrated in a special ceremony honoring the traditions of the First Peoples from California and the Pacific Northwest and the Pacific Islands. 

Chains of the double helix DNA are carved by special chain saws over the entire outside of the log. Eco-artist Shane Eagleton selected the DNA theme for all the Kohola Sculptures because it symbolizes all life; animal, plant and human, male and female. DNA is the common link of all life. 

The surfaces of each log are then ground smooth by special high speed grinders.  

Special symbols appropriate to the intended healing theme and purpose of the log are hand carved with special carving tools onto the surfaces of the DNA.

A coating of boiled linseed oil or marine varnish is applied to protect the outer surfaces from the elements and to help retain the inner red and yellow colorations of the wood which will turn dark as it oxidizes naturally with the light and the elements.

The surface areas are periodically covered with linseed oil for continued protection against the elements.  For healing poles to remain outside in the winter elements, a special coating is applied to prevent cracking and discoloration of the exterior from exposure to the elements. 

Above Jon Larson applies another protective coat of linseed oil to the surface of the Pacific Islanders PICA Pole which was sculpted in 1997 into a Hawaiian humpback whale by Shane Eagleton, the Pacific Islanders Cultural Association, and the Kohola carving support team of organizations from throughout the San Francisco Bay area. 

 


 

Transporting the Sculptures

The following sequence of photos shows the early morning relocation of the PICA Pacific Islanders Sculpture from a carving site across downtown San Francisco to its current display site at the Interfaith Center at the Presido.

 

Through the streets of San Francisco

 

In front of the San Francisco Civic Center Building

 

Along Crissy Field with the fog enshrouded Golden Gate Bridge in the background. 

 

Up Sheridan Avenue in the Presidio

 

Lifting the healing pole off the truck with the forklift.

 

Careful placement in its final resting place.

 

Mission accomplished.

 



 

The Artist

Eco-sculpturist Shane Eagleton, artistic Director of the Kohola healing poles project.

 

"WhaleForest" wood print by Shane Eagleton

 

"Keiki Kohola" -  by Shane Eagleton

The Artist: SHANE EAGLETON is a master woodcarver, ecologist, and educator. For 20 years he has created a multitude of sculptures, a few of them mentioned below. Trees are not sacrificed for his artwork. He only uses naturally fallen timber or recycled wood. The tree becomes the medium for the message. 

Eagleton's artwork abounds with images from the natural world, bringing attention to the plight of endangered species. Shane's carvings are enduring and inspirational monuments to our precious Earth and the need to pre-serve her for future generations. 

Shane is son of a British Royal Air Force officer who found his bride in Fiji. The family left Fiji when Shane was 6 to move to New Zealand. There he stayed until 17, when he set out to see the world. Shane spent years traveling through Africa, the Middle East, and Europe. He made his way to the United States for the first time when he crewed on a yacht crossing the Atlantic. 

In America Shane learned the art of tree surgery, a vocation which led him in two directions at once. He found a cause - recycling trees instead of consigning them to landfill or a buzz-saw. For Shane the cause has become spiritually grounded; giving trees a second life is symbolic of treating the whole planet and its endangered life-forms with more care and respect. Tree surgery also gave Eagleton an amazing tool, a new kind of artist's brush - the chain-saw. He has more than a dozen saws, ranging from small delicate machines to one with a chain arching out six feet. Whether he is sculpting a 40-foot whale from of a single 2,000-year-old redwood, carving small "fish" to make art-collectors out of awestruck children, creating furniture, raising healing poles, or crafting puppets, Eagleton is a master with anything made of recycled wood. 

Shane's work has been collected all over the world. In the Bay Area it can be found at the Shoreline Amphi-theater, Strybing Arboretum, the Mission Cultural Center, and St. Gregory of Nicea Episcopal Church in San Francisco, and in the Presidio Native Plants Nursery. His work is also installed in Australia, Czechoslovakia, England, Hawaii, and Samoa. Mr. Eagleton is an artist-in-residence at The Cultural Conservancy and involved in a continuing series of projects with the Interfaith Center at the Presidio. He was recently invited to create a Center for Trees, Culture, and Sustainability at the Windward Campus of the University of Hawaii. He will also continue his relationship with the Conservancy and Center.


"Mother Koholasculpture by Shane Eagleton on display at Crissy Field on San Francisco Bay at the Pacific Islanders Cultural Association's Aloha Festival in 1995. It is carved from a single 5 ton 40 foot long 2000 year old abandoned redwood log salvaged from a defunct sawmill in Mendocino County, California.

Click here for more background information on  Tonu Shane Eagleton. <==

 



 

A brief history of the Kohola Project

 

The project genesis was at the United Nations 50th Anniversary Interfaith activities in San Francisco in June of 1995. At the invitation of the United Nations, San Francisco and Grace Cathedral were asked to host an Interfaith celebration honoring the 50th anniversary of the signing of the Charter of the United Nations in San Francisco in June of 1945. 

Religious leaders representing the world's faith traditions, UN leaders representing all member nations of the United Nations, Nobel Peace Prize winners, heads of State, children from international children's choirs, and young men and women from the Rediscovering Justice Conference representing all faith traditions, met at Grace Cathedral and heard a call for a new United Religions Initiative modeled after the political UN which seeks to promote respect, peace, understanding and healing between the world's main common era faith traditions.

During the Interfaith activities, the Hawaiian Spiritual Delegation hosted by Hawaii born San Franciscan Jon Larson and led by Rev. (Kahu) William Kaina and Kehaulani Kea of Honolulu met with many world peace representatives including Archbishop Desmond Tutu at the University of San Francisco ReDiscovering Justice Conference, native Americans at the University of California, and Rev. Paul Chaffee of The Interfaith Center at the Presidio. 

They first viewed the great life-size whale being carved by Shane Eagleton from a 2,000 year old fallen Redwood tree trunk. They named the sculpture KohoLa (the Hawaiian word for the humpback whales of Hawaii). Early Hawaiians observed the mother whales gently pushing their newborn keikis (calves) towards the surface (the light) for their first breath. KohoLa literally translates to "Seek the Light" and is used by the Kohola Project as a spiritual idiom for to "Seek the Truth." 

Within these exciting historical spiritual circumstances, the Kohola Sculptures Project was born.



 

Project Participants

 

 

Kohola Project participants include:

Interfaith Center at the Presidio

Presidio of San Francisco

National Park Service

The Cultural Conservancy

Pacific Islanders Cultural Association - PICA

GGNPA - Golden Gate National Park

Presidio Native Plants Nursery

Muwekma Ohlone Indian Tribe of the San Francisco Bay

Tonu Shane Eagleton, eco-sculpturist

California Indian Museum and Cultural Center

GGNRA - Golden Gate National Recreation Area

Monterey County Youth Workforce Investment Board

Jon and Karen Larson Family Foundation

 


 

Logo's of the original Kohola Sculptures project participants:

 

 

PICA - Pacific Islanders Cultural Association

 

 

The Interfaith Center at the Presidio

 

 

 

The Cultural Conservancy

 

The Ohlone Muwekma Indian Tribe of the San Francisco Bay

 

The California Indian Museum and Cultural Center



 

The Presidio Native Plant Nursery of the GGNPC Golden Gate National Parks Conservancy.

 

 

 

Monterey County Youth of the California Workforce Investment Board One Stop Career Center

 



Many individuals have contributed to the Kohola Sculptures Project and the carving of the Kohola Sculptures.  Special thanks to those below who have made

 

special 

contributions.

Shane Eagleton - Master carver

Manley Bush - Olena Productions

Jules Hart - Eye Goddess Productions

Marcus VonSkepsgardh - Protect All Life

Melissa Nelson - The Cultural Conservancy

Francisco DaCosta   -   National Park Service

Paul and Jan Chaffee - Interfaith Center at the Presidio

Joseph Werner - Workforce Investment Board of Monterey

Rudy Rosales - Ohlone Costanoan Esselen Nation Indian Council

Elayna and Sonne Reyna - San Juan Bautista American Indian Council

Rosemary Cambra - Ohlone Muwekma Indian Tribe of the San Francisco Bay

Hovey Lambert, Julian and Shirley Avilla, Sam Hart - Pacific Islanders Cultural Association

Jon and Karen Larson

 

 



 

"One Voice Healing Pole"

Dedicated to the memory of all those who lost their lives 

in the tragedies of September 11, 2001

in New York, Washington and Pennsylvania.

Official News Release: click here

 

The "One Voice Healing Pole" was carved by a special group of young men and women of the Monterey Bay area under the supervision of Shane Eagleton in a special government and privately funded project sponsored by the non-profit Monterey County Youth Workforce Investment Board.

This organization sponsors special work programs funded by the Workforce Investment Act and sponsored by Monterey County Workforce Investment Board, the Office for Employment Training, and the Monterey County One-Stop Career Center System. Youth from throughout Monterey County participate in these annual projects which not only beautify the community for years to come but also provide the youth with team-building skills, bonding, and a pride for their community which translates into productive members and good citizens of the community in which they live.

 

Above are some of the Monterey County Youth Workforce participants.

 

A Gift in remembrance of 9-11

A project is under way to gift the One Voice Healing Pole and an associated Pne Voice Mural as  healing symbols in permanent memory of all those who lost their lives in the 9-11 tragedies. 

The vision is to transport it across country from Monterey, California on a truck, stopping off at schools and relevant historical points along the way to gather additional healing energy from children and young men and women enroute.  

It would make its first stop at the Port Chicago Naval Magazine National Memorial in recognition of the special history Port Chicago played in the life of the Alaskan yellow cedar log from which the One Voice Healing Pole is carved.  Stops would be made at the crash site in Pennsylvania and the Pentagon on its journey to New York City. 

Assuming the vision is consummated and the proposed gift is accepted, it will be installed at an appropriate location yet to be determined somewhere near the rebuilt area of New York City where it will remain on permanent public display in memory of all those who lost their lives in the tragedies of that day as a symbol of healing and restoration.

 

Ten

Alaskan yellow cedar logs were salvaged from the former Port Chicago Naval Base in 1997. Here they are stored in the San Francisco Presidio prior to being carved into healing poles. They average 30 feet in length and weigh 2-3 tons each.  Their ages vary from 300 to over Thousand years old. It is difficult to determine the exact age of each log because the original cedar trees reached over 100 feet tall and these logs averaging 30 feet each could have come from upper sections of a much older old growth tree at the base. Actual ring counts indicate an age of over 1,000 years of the PICA Sculpture. One of these logs was gifted to the Monterey County Workforce Investment Board, the Office for Employment Training, and the Monterey County One-Stop Career Center System where it was carved in the summer of 2000 into the One Voice Healing Pole. 

 


Above is one of the original ten Kohola logs salvaged in 1997 from the former U.S. Navy Port Chicago Naval Magazine base in the San Francisco Bay as it arrived at the original carving site at the Presidio of San Francisco before being carved into a healing pole.  The surfaces were charred and worn from being in service in the Bay for over 50 years as floating shipping caissons. The One Voice 9-11 Healing Pole (below) was carved from one of these ten logs.

 


The completed One Voice Healing Pole above is currently stored at Fort Ord in Monterey, California, waiting relocation to its final destination in New York City.

 

 


 

The One Voice Mural

The One Voice Mural above depicts the story of the One Voice Healing Pole from its birth  within a 1,000 thousand year old yellow cedar forest in Alaska, being cut down in the early 1920's and transported to San Francisco by rail, serving for 70 years both in peace and wartime at a ship building yard and then at the Port Chicago Naval Base where it survived the June 1944 blast, being salvaged and recovered by the Kohola Healing Poles project in 1997 and transported to the San Francisco Presidio, then being transported to a special carving area within the U.S. Army's historic Fort Ord in Monterey, carving by the Monterey Workforce Investment Board One Voice project youth, and its final transportation to New York City as a gift in permanent memory of those who lost their lives in the 9-11 tragedies and those others in uniforms serving in the fire and police departments and in military uniforms in the global war against terrorism. 

 


 

     

Above, Jon Larson, director of the Kohola Sculptures project who gifted the Port Chicago Alaskan yellow cedar log for the One Voice project, videographer Jules Hart of Eye Goddess Productions who captured the project story over 2 years on video, and Joseph Werner, director of the Monterey County Workforce Investment Board, the Office for Employment Training, and the Monterey County One-Stop Career Center System who sponsored the carving project, stand by the completed One Voice Healing Pole at Fort Ord, California near Monterey where it awaits transportation via truck to a permanent home in New York City.

 


       

    The One Voice 9-11 Healing Pole with a representation of California youth at the public dedication ceremony in Palm Springs, California.

     


 

    To see how the Healing Poles are transported, ==>  Transportation.

     


       

    The One Voice 9-11 Healing Pole before the dedication ceremony at the Bronx Zoo on September 5, 2002

     


       

    The One Voice 9-11 Healing Pole makes it debut.

     


       

       

    The One Voice 9-11 Healing Pole with a representation of New York City Council members, Bronx Borough political representation, local Jacoby Hospital officials, New York City police and firemen, school teachers, Monterey student carvers, California Workforce Investment Board members, administrators and management of the Bronx Zoo, and surviving members of families who lost loved ones in the 9-11 tragedy.

     


       

       

    Jon and Karen Larson standing with the One Voice 9-11 Healing Totem sculpture.



 

The Port Chicago Disaster and the Port Chicago Kohola Logs:

The One Voice Healing Pole and the other nine Kohola logs all survived the massive calamity at the Port Chicago Naval Magazine ammunition base the night of July 17th, 1944. Two ammunition ships being loaded with munitions destined for the war in the Pacific exploded in a freak accident unexplained to this day. The two ships, the ammo loading facility and the lives of 320 Sailors, Marines, Coast Guardsmen, Merchant Mariners, and workers on duty that night were all pulverized in an instant in the immense explosion. 390 more were injured in the blast that also damaged or destroyed many of the surrounding buildings at the naval base and the nearby town.  The explosion and flames up to 2 miles high lit up the night sky and could be seen and heard up to 200 miles away. Some feared the world's first explosion of an atomic bomb had just occurred. 

 

The Port Chicago US Naval Magazine National Memorial

 

Port Chicago Naval Magazine National Memorial was dedicated in 1994 by the survivors of that tragic incident in permanent memory of those who lost their lives and whose lives were severely affected by the explosion. The national memorial is managed by the U.S. National Park Service as one of over 400 historical sites they manage. It is located on San Francisco Bay on the area formerly known as Port Chicago Naval Magazine, later included with the Concord Naval Weapons Station Concord, and now renamed Concord Military Ocean Terminal managed by the U.S. Army. 

The site was used as a shipyard during World War I and was served by the Santa Fe, Southern Pacific, and Western Pacific railways. Construction of the Port Chicago ammunition depot was authorized on December 9, 1941, just 2 days after Pearl Harbor and started operations in November 1942. 

Most of the ammunition arrived by train from Hawthorne, Nevada, where it was made, was held in boxcars "parked" between protective concrete barriers, and when needed, the trains were moved onto the pier which accommodated 2 ships. About a mile from the pier were barracks which housed the African-American ammunition handlers.

Loading went on 24 hours per day. The men moved the ammunition hand-to-hand, on hand trucks, or carts, or rolled larger bombs down a ramp from the boxcars which were right on the pier and placed them into cargo netting which they spread out on the pier.

The ammo included small caliber bullets, incendiary bombs, fragmentation bombs, depth charges, and bombs up to 2,000 pounds. The cargo nets were lowered by the ships booms into a hatch, where they were packed layer by layer and secured with dunnage (scrap wood).

Neither the officers nor the men received any training in handling ammunition. There was tremendous pressure to speed up the loading and officers made bets on the quantity of ammunition their unit would load in an 8 hour shift. The men were speeded up by threats of punishment. It was backbreaking, dangerous work.

No cause for the explosion was ever determined.

The black ammunition handlers, many of whom had quietly voiced concerns about safety, feared loading ammunition again. Fifty enlisted black men, including one with a broken arm, were tried for mutiny. The men stated they were willing to follow orders, but were afraid to handle ammunition under unchanged circumstances. They stated they had never been ordered to load ammunition, only asked "if they wanted to load ammunition."

All 50 were found guilty of "mutiny," and sentenced to 15 years. Review of the sentence brought reductions for 40 of the men to sentences of 8 to 12 years. Joe Small, who acted at foreman for his group of loaders and others who were willing to criticize the operation had their original sentence upheld. An appeal by Thurgood Marshall of the NAACP was denied. In 1944 the Navy announced that blacks at ammunition depots would be limited to 30% of the total. In 1945 the Navy officially desegregated.

In January 1946 the 50 "mutineers" were released from prison and remained in the Navy. They were sent to the South Pacific in small groups for a "probationary period," and gradually released from service. Congress eventually awarded $3,000 to each victim. 

The tragedy and its aftermath were catalysts that helped persuade the U.S. Navy and the military establishment to begin the long journey on the road to racial justice and equality following WWII.

This history is important because it feeds the healing and restoration themes of the current use of the Kohola Sculptures including the One Voice Healing Pole.

 



 

The 1944 Port Chicago Naval Magazine explosion:

Above is what we believe to be historical evidence of the Kohola logs from official U.S. Navy photos of the Port Chicago 1944 blast.  Note in the bottom photo on the right hand side what we believe is one of the ten salvaged Kohola logs that survived the blast, wrapped in the heavy chains which tied the floating caissons together. 

Although exact historical information regarding the source of the Kohola logs is not 100% verifiable, we have researched available information and present it herein as our best judgment and opinion about the source, age and history of the logs. 

 


 

Background on The Explosion:
On the evening of July 17, 1944 two ships were being loaded at the pier. The Liberty ship SS E.A. Bryan, after 4 days of loading, had about 4,600 tons of ammunition and explosives on board. 98 enlisted men continued work. On board the ship were 31 U.S. Merchant Marine crew and 13 Naval Armed Guard.

Also docked at the pier since 6 PM that evening was the SS Quinault Victory being loaded by about 100 men for its maiden voyage. On board were 36 crew and 17 Armed Guard. A Coast Guard fire barge was also moored at the pier. Besides 430 tons of bombs waiting to be loaded, the pier held a locomotive and 16 boxcars with its crew of three civilians, and a marine sentry.

At 10:18 an Army Air Force plane flying at 9,000 feet saw pieces of white hot metal, some as large as a house, fly straight up past them. According to the co-pilot, the "fireworks display" lasted about one minute. The explosion was heard 200 miles away.  

The Miahelo, a Coast Guard patrol boat, was about 1,500 feet from the pier. The force of the explosion wrecked the wheelhouse, nearly capsized the boat, badly wounded the man at the wheel, and was followed by a 30 foot wall of water. A 16 inch shell, which did not explode, hit the engine room of a small tanker, the SS Redline which was passing nearby.

The 1,200 foot long wooden pier, the locomotive and boxcars, the SS E.A. Bryan, and 320 people including 202 black enlisted men on the pier were gone. All 67 crew and 30 Armed Guard aboard the two ships died instantly.  390 military and civilians were injured, which included men in the barracks and townspeople, 233 of which were black enlisted men.

There were no identifiable pieces of the SS E.A. Bryan remaining. Over 12,000 tons of ship and ammunition were gone!  Disappeared!  The stern of the SS Quinault Victory lay upside down in the water 500 feet from its origin. The rest of the ship which had been lifted clear out of the water and turned around, was in scattered pieces.

Since this was war time, little information was made available to the public. Due to the size and impact of the fireball explosion and the widespread extent of the damage, there was immediate speculation, fear and rumor that this was the first accidental explosion of an atomic bomb. However, the evidence obtained onsite immediately thereafter including the absence of nuclear radiation proved otherwise and clearly showed it was the explosion of the conventional ammunition and ordinance at the site. Although the fact of the detonation of an atomic bomb was dispelled in the days immediately thereafter, the rumor persists to this day. 


For more information on the Port Chicago disaster, please visit the following web sites:

 


     

    The California Workforce Investment Board

    The federal Workforce Investment Act of 1998

    The sponsor of the One Voice-Healing Pole is the Monterey County Youth Workforce Investment Board which is one of many similar boards in operation in counties throughout the U.S. The local workforce boards are the outcome of an Act of congress, the federal Workforce Investment Act of 1998.  Through this act, federal moneys are provided to the individual states to administer local workforce development programs in counties throughout each state through a Workforce Investment Board (WIB) appointed by the governor of each state.

    The purpose is to provide workforce investment activities, through statewide and local workforce investment systems, that increase the employment, retention, and earnings of participants, and increase occupational skill attainment by participants, and, as a result, improve the quality of the workforce, reduce welfare dependency, and enhance the productivity and competitiveness of the Nation. 

    The State Board includes: 

    (A) the Governor; 

    (B) members of each chamber of the State legislature, appointed by the appropriate presiding officers of each such chamber; 

    (C) representatives appointed by the Governor, who are representatives of business in the State, who-- 

        (I) are owners of businesses, chief executives or operating officers of businesses, and other business executives or employers with optimum policymaking or hiring authority.

        (II) represent businesses with employment opportunities that reflect the employment opportunities of the State; 

       (III) are appointed from among individuals nominated by State business organizations and business trade associations including; 

The Workforce Investment Board brings together the business and education communities, local government, and residents to:

  • Identify emerging local and regional workforce issues and create practical solutions.
  • Keep current on the pulse of changes in local occupations.
     

  • Set policy for Workforce Investment Act services provided through Career Centers special One-Stop programs.
     
  • Provide resources to implement new employment services envisioned in the federal Workforce Investment Act including training and deploying high-tech workers, retraining employees who have been laid off, and ensuring that youth have the skills they need as they enter the labor market.

    To learn more about the federal Workforce Investment Act, visit the  Workforce Investment Act of 1998 web site.



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    Future Kohola Sculpture Projects

    Three new sculpture projects are in the  active planning stages:

     


    Interfaith Healing Pole

    at the Interfaith Center at the Presidio

     

     

    One of the original ten Kohola Port Chicago logs has been reserved for carving by a yet to be assembled Interfaith design and carving team.  It will contain appropriate symbols of the faith traditions of the world. Plans call for it to be raised vertically on the ICP grounds in the San Francisco Presidio where it can be viewed and appreciated by all who visit the ICP. 

    It will be dedicated in part to the memory of Mary Ellen Gaylord who was so instrumental in supporting the growth and success of the ICP over the start up years. Her memory and spirit will live on with us through this beautiful tribute to her and to all of those who have worked together over the years towards the success of the Interfaith Center at the Presidio and the growing interfaith movement throughout the world which seeks to expand mutual respect and enlightenment between the world's main faith traditions.

    People of all faiths are welcome at The Interfaith Center at the Presidio.

     

    Presidio Mural: A notable artistic feature of the Interfaith Center at the Presidio Chapel is a large wall mural painted in 1935 by Victor Arnautoff who was recognized as a leading artist of the period. The mural depicts a historical pageant related to the founding of the Presidio, the peacetime activities of the Army, and the first establishment of a Christian religious tradition on the lands of the Presidio, all in the first years of immigrants from Europe to the area. 

     

    The mural also depicts the First Peoples of San Francisco, the Ohlone Muwekma, in peaceful encounters with the recently arrived religious, military and business elements migrating to the area in the 1800's, just as the ancestors of the Ohlone First Peoples migrated to the area many thousands of years earlier and lived on these same lands.

     

    Raising an Interfaith Healing Pole - A Preliminary Proposal Summary 

    The Interfaith Center at the Presidio is formulating plans and seeking necessary approvals to raise a 25' ancient yellow cedar Interfaith Healing Pole near the Main Post Chapel on a ridge descending the hillside to the northeast. The tree will be carved to highlight symbols from the world's major religions and indigenous traditions.  Placed between relatively young pines, it will fit in beautifully with the hillside, providing a symbol of the possibility of healing, respect, and friendship among all religious spiritual traditions and their followers. 

    The story of recycling an ancient two ton yellow cedar, a tree taken from its Alaska hillside where it stood for many centuries - to its practical wartime role at Port Chicago - to its role as a symbol of healing between the world's religions, is an incredible story of destiny. Here is history to complement the remarkable history associated with the Presidio since 1776. 

    APPROPRIATE INTERFAITH SYMBOLISM - The U.S. military, because of its interfaith posture guaranteed by the Bill of Rights, has built hundreds of interfaith sanctuaries all over the world, including the Main Post Chapel. Indigenous Native American First Nations' spirituality is also pluralistic, naturally interfaith in perspective, and focused on nature. A number of tribes use sacred poles themselves. So having a dramatic 'interfaith healing pole' - made from recycled wood native to America - seems culturally, symbolically, and historically appropriate for these historical times at the beginning of a new century and millennium when the world's faith traditions are reaching out to each other as perhaps no other time in history by those wishing to bring lasting peace to the troubled areas of northern Ireland, the Middle East, and in the aftermath of the 9-11 tragedies. 

     

     

    The "Interfaith" Healing Pole shown above was present at the first United Religions Initiative conference at Stanford University in June of 1999, the initial convocation of a large group of representatives of faith traditions from throughout the world who gathered to organize a United Religions organization inspired by and modeled after the success of the United Nations. It contains symbols of the world's faith traditions carved on the surface. Since the initial meeting in 1999, the URI organization has expanded to a presence worldwide.

     


    The Main Post Chapel is part of the Main Post and as such is part of the historical, cultural vision conceived by the PTIP Presidio Trust Initial Plan and its predecessor documents. The sculpture will be landscaped on the ridge and accessible so that people could easily walk down from the Chapel or up from the Golden Gate Club. People would have a place to sit and enjoy a vista of the Golden Gate on one side, and downtown San Francisco on the other. It would be a high-interest, low-maintenance, culturally significant asset for the Park. The pole would be a gift to the Park, with an agreement that the Interfaith Center would maintain it. 

    The site for the proposed Interfaith Healing Pole is 75 feet below the Presidio's Main Post Chapel, on the ridge running northeast of the Chapel. This site guarantees the historic integrity of the various views of the Chapel. As one looks up to the Chapel from the Golden Gate Club as thousands do each month, the picture post-card image of the Chapel would not be touched. Having the cemetery on the right and now the healing pole on the left, standing next to still living trees, gives the whole vista added significance and attraction. It would be the one place where a person could look across the Main Post to downtown San Francisco and by simply turning around, see the Chapel, the National Cemetery and the Golden Gate Bridge.

    The Recycled Tree will be used. An ancient old growth yellow cedar tree that spent the better part of the twentieth century protecting U. S. Navy vessels at Port Chicago while munitions and bombs were loaded was purchased by an interfaith donor several years ago when this project was first conceived. The tree was secured over a year ago through a donation and has been in storage while planning, fundraising, and now applying for permission takes place. If permission is quickly granted, we would like to raise it in 2002. 

    As in many previous poles by Shane Eagleton, the project sculptor who has carved around the world, the Interfaith Healing Pole will feature the design of DNA, the substance shared by all that lives. Against this DNA motif, Shane will carve images, figures, and symbols drawn from the world's religious and spiritual traditions, indigenous and established. A team of religious artists and interested parties is accumulating the images and reflecting on them with the artist.  Shane's healing poles include one honoring American Indians commissioned by the Bay Area's Shoreline Amphitheater; a privately owned pole in Half-Moon Bay featuring the world's animals; and a pole carved at the Presidio with a whale emerging out of waves which is currently on display outside the Interfaith Center until it is relocated to a suitable place in Hawaii according to current plans to gift the PICA Kohola Sculpture to the University of Hawaii. 

    "We will begin with the religious symbols and actually carve them into the pole in some depth," says Shane. "For the ICP Interfaith Healing Pole, we want to let the symbols, the images themselves find their way into this ancient wood."  

     


     

    The ICP Interfaith Healing Pole will be blessed and dedicated to interfaith peoples all over the world who work for peace among religions and nations.

     


     

    Sculpting of two massive sculptures has already begun in California in the San Francisco Presidio.  Special teams of California and Hawaii youth and youth from Japan will carve the remaining details of these two massive sculptures at special carving sites in the San Francisco Presidio, Monterey California and Honolulu, Hawaii.  When completed, the Thousand Cranes Youth Sculpture will travel to Japan and the Hawaiian Life Ahupua'a Sculpture will remain in Hawaii.

     

    "Thousand Cranes" Youth Sculpture

     

     

    The Thousand Cranes Youth Sculpture

    The Thousand Cranes Youth Sculpture will be an unconditional gift to all the youth of Japan and the world from the youth of California and Hawaii. It will contain carvings of the native plants and animals, birds and marine life of Japan including many endangered and already extinct species. The sculpture will also be in memory of Japanese schoolgirl Sadako Sasaki and her bravery and steadfastness while facing unexpected diversity in her own life. She died of leukemia several years after being exposed to atomic radiation. Perhaps you have read the story of “Sadako and the Thousand Cranes”. When Sadako became sick, she decided to fold a thousand cranes (the crane is a Japanese symbol of good luck and long life) in the hopes that they would bring her health back. When she died, Sadako's classmates decided to build a statue in her memory through which her life continues to be celebrated long after her passing.

    Planning has begun to create and consecrate the "Thousand Cranes" Youth Sculpture in memory of those affected by the unfortunate side effects of war on all sides of the conflict in the Pacific theater in World War II.  Specially affected were the residents of Hawaii and Japan who suffered directly the losses of both Pearl Harbor and Hiroshima/Nagasaki, and those who died in the Port Chicago, California disaster in between. The key energy for healing will come through the youth of California, New York City, Hawaii and Japan who together with the other youth of the world will lead us to new possibilities and a more secure renewed future.

    It will be carved from one of the ten original Kohola (renamed to Kohola) carving logs that survived the Port Chicago Disaster in June of 1944, just 14 months before the explosion of the world's first atomic bomb over Hiroshima in August of 1945 that was intended by Allied military and political planners to bring the long war in the Pacific to a quick end.

    The log will be consecrated in the San Francisco Presidio by members of the original Kohola project team, where youth from the Presidio Native Plants Nursery of the Golden Gate National Park Association will apply the first carved symbols of the native plants of Japan.  The sculpture will then be transported  to Monterey, California where it will be further carved with more symbols of Japan animal and plant and sea life by young carvers of the Monterey Workforce investment board jobs training program. It will then be shipped to Honolulu, Hawaii where it will be completed by the youth of Hawaii including students at the University of Hawaii, the Hawaii Workforce Investment Board,  other local youth organizations, and youth from Japan studying at schools in Hawaii. When completed it will be transported to Japan and gifted to the youth of Japan and to all the Japanese people in a special ceremony and placed at an appropriate place within the Hiroshima Memorial Peace Park where it can be viewed by all who visit the park.

    The possibility of the Thousand Cranes Youth Sculpture was first envisioned by Samuel Hart of the Pacific Islanders Cultural Association, himself a 5th generation Hawaiian kahuna, upon the arrival of the ten Kohola healing logs at the San Francisco Presidio carving site in 1997.  This project honors his healing vision.

    June Casey is a lifelong survivor of cancer caused by early exposure to radiation while living in Washington State near the Hanford atomic energy development laboratories near her home. She is a participant in the activities of the Interfaith Center at the Presidio and is also a key representative of the gifting energy that is forming around this project. 

    When the project is consummated, it is envisioned that the Thousand Cranes Youth Sculpture will join the numerous other monuments, statues, and fountains in Hiroshima Memorial Peace Park.

     

     

    Hiroshima Memorial Peace Park

    Every year, in Hiroshima, Japan, on August 6th, people float lanterns with prayers, thoughts, and messages of peace down the local rivers in commemoration of the atomic bombing of Hiroshima on August 6th, 1945. With similar peaceful intention, this healing pole is not meant to condemn nor condone the bombing, but is meant as a way for people to express their views on how to achieve peace through healing processes that honor losses by all parties to a disagreement while focusing on lessons learned and a more positive view of future possibilities working together.  

    Actual photo of the Hiroshima explosion

    The atomic bomb dropped on Hiroshima generated a huge amount of energy when it exploded. The amount of energy generated by the bomb was equivalent to the amount of energy generated by a 15,000 ton TNT explosion.  Half of the energy was consumed when the explosion generated an ultra high air pressure which resulted in very strong bomb blast (wind). One third of the energy was consumed when the explosion generated heat, while the rest of the energy was consumed when the explosion generated radiation.  This was three times the amount of total energy that was released in the Port Chicago explosion 14 months earlier when 4,600 tons of explosives ignited in one furious blast. 

    Hiroshima Memorial Peace Park:  

    Hiroshima is a name known around the world as the Japanese city destroyed by the world's first atomic bomb. The US dropped the bomb on August 6, 1945. After the US dropped a second atomic bomb on the Japanese city of Nagasaki one week later, the Japanese surrendered, thus ending World War 2. The Hiroshima Memorial Peace Park , designed and built after the war, is a memorial to the people who died in the atomic bomb. In addition, the aims of the Memorial Peace Park include helping bring about the abolition of nuclear weapons and the realization of world peace. 

    At one end of the large, green park is the atomic bomb dome. This was one of the few buildings that remained standing after the atomic bomb hit Hiroshima, although only the dome and some of the outer walls survived the blast. Most of the other city buildings were destroyed along with an estimated 78,150 people who perished that day. 

    Not too far from the A-bomb dome is a statue called the "Children's Peace Monument" (below). 

    Children's Peace Monument - "Tower of aThousand Cranes"

    Note the thousands of brightly colored origami paper cranes around the base. 

     

    The "Tower of a Thousand Cranes" is a beautiful statue of a young girl holding a crane over her head. Nearby are thousands of brightly colored origami paper cranes that people bring daily to place next to the Sadako statue. It is erected in the memory a Junior High School girl, Sadako Sasaki, who died of an A-bomb disease (leukemia). Perhaps you have read the story of Sadako and the Thousand Cranes. When Sadako became sick, she decided to fold a thousand cranes (a Japanese symbol of good luck and long life) in the hopes that they would bring her health back. When she died, Sadako's classmates decided to build a statue in her memory. 

    At the center of the park is a pond and a cenotaph which is an arched sculpture. Resting below the arched sculpture is a register of the names of all the people who died as a result of exposure to the Atomic bomb. In addition, to the names of the people killed the day the atomic bomb was dropped, it also lists the names of those who died in the days, weeks, months, and years later due to the fire, heat, and radiation generated by the bomb. Currently, it contains over 181,000 names. A small stone at the base of the arch reads, "Let all the souls here rest in peace; For we shall not repeat the evil." Nearby is the "The "Flame of Peace. " It was built in 1964 as 10,000 observers offered their silent prayers for peace. It is said that the flame will burn until the entire world if free from nuclear weapons. The park also contains numerous other monuments, statues, and fountains. 

     

    The A-Dome, one of the few downtown Hiroshima buildings not leveled by the atomic bomb explosion still stands within Hiroshima Memorial Peace Park.

     

    At the opposite end of the park from the A-Dome is the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum. The museum contains film clips, photos, narratives, and models of Hiroshima. It also includes artifacts such as children's clothing, and a watch that stopped exactly at 8:15 am , the moment of the Hiroshima atomic bomb blast. Japanese, Americans, and people from all over the world look at the exhibits in silence. One can not help but feel sadness and reverence for the people of Hiroshima who perished in the terrifying blast on August 6th over 55 years ago. The museum portrays the Japanese's own role in World War II, especially their invasions of other Asian nations and the bombing of Pearl Harbor that ultimately led to the US's decision to enter World War II. In a museum exhibit called "Lessons of History" the inscription says, " ...we must never forget that nuclear weapons are the fruits of war. Japan too with colonization policies and wars of aggression inflicted incalculable irreversible harm on the peoples of many countries. 

    Hiroshima Peace Flame 

    We must reflect on war and the causes of war, not just nuclear weapons. We must learn the lessons of history, that we may learn and avoid the paths that led to war." Pope John Paul's message at the entrance of the Peace Memorial Museum inscribed on a large stone says "War is the work of man. War is destruction of human life. War is death. To remember the past is to Commit oneself to the future. To remember Hiroshima is to abhor nuclear war, To remember Hiroshima is to commit oneself to peace."

    More photos of Hiroshima Memorial Peace Park


     

    "Childrens Sculpture 

       

     

    The original Childrens Sculpture under construction in 1997, carved from a 150 year old California redwood tree that had fallen over on private land in a windstorm.

     

     



     

    Port Chicago Sculpture

    A vision has been expressed to create and consecrate a Kohola sculpture to be erected at the Port Chicago site and dedicated to the memory of all those who lost their lives in the huge explosion in 1944.  This log and the nine other Port Chicago logs all withstood the immense blast in 1944 caused by the explosion onboard ammunition ships being loaded with munitions destined for the war in the Pacific. Two ships, the ammo loading facility, and the lives of the 320 sailors on duty that night were all pulverized in an instant in the immense explosion.

     

    The Port Chicago US Naval Magazine National Memorial located on San Francisco Bay.

     


     

    Restoration Park  (A Vision)

     

    A design Vision for Restoration Park

    The Park would feature a permanent family of 16 immense fallen old growth healing poles erected in a special area within the San Francisco Presidio.

    The Park would be an integral part of the "swords to plowshares" conversion of the Presidio from a former U.S. Army base to a national park managed by the new Presidio Trust.

    The Park's four entrances will embrace the "six directions:" north through the United Nations entrance, south through the United Religions entrance, east through the Rising Sun entrance, and west through the Golden Gate Bridge entrance to the Pacific Ocean and Islands of the world, downward to Mother Earth, and up to the Father Sky.

    Restoration Park will embrace the four elements, earth, water, fire and air.

    The 16 individual healing poles which together comprise Restoration  Park will represent the Continents, Islands and Oceans, all First Peoples, Men, Women, Children, the United Nations and the world's Faith Traditions.

    The carving of the Sculptures will be done by the same Kohola Carving Team that created the first four Kohola Sculptures. The poles themselves will come from previously fallen redwood and cedar trees from special areas throughout Northern California obtained through the assistance and approvals of the ancestors of the indigenous peoples of California.

    The carving will be done at the Kohola Carving Site at the Presidio, the same site shared with the San Francisco Recycling Center at the Presidio.

    At the center of the Park will be a Healing Fire Pit with continuous flames erupting in a concentric circular patterns through sands and soil collected from sacred areas of all First Peoples of North America and the Pacific Islands. The Sacred Fire Pit will itself be constructed from special rocks gathered from ceremonial indigenous area healing pits from throughout the Americas.

    Amphitheater seating around the Sacred Fire Pit will accommodate outdoor meetings and gatherings. Special lighting will illuminate the Sculptures at night.



     

    Where to view the Sculptures

    The Protect All Life Sculpture is on display at the PAL Foundation's facility in Half Moon Bay. 

    The two One Voice Healing Poles are at Fort Ord in Monterey, California. They are awaiting completion of the plan to transport one across country and erect it in the Fall of 2002 in New York City within the New York City Zoo and Botanical Gardens. It is envisioned the second one of the pair will be erected in California on the same day.

    Five of the completed Kohola Sculptures are on display in the Presidio of San Francisco.

    Please call us to arrange personal guided tours of any of the sculptures.

     



     

    Contact Us

    Eco-sculpturist Tonu Shane Eagleton, artistic Director of the Kohola healing poles project.


     


    .

    Jon Larson 

    PO Box 751, Tiburon, CA 94920 415-435-3222  jon_larson@hotmail.com

     

    Rev. Paul Chaffee, Tonu Shane Eagleton and Jon Larson

     

    On behalf of all of those who have participated in the Kohola Sculptures Project, may our endeavors in the pursuit of healing between all living things on this planet become the important work of us all.

     

      "As we give,, so shall we receive...".



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