Our Sundot Ohana stretches far and wide across the world and the skills we all bring to our communities is incredible. Christa Russell is an avid ocean dweller and Big Island adventurer and in her spare time, happens to work as a Police Officer in Kailua-Kona, Hawaii.
We caught up with her about her recent trip to Kaua'i to spread the ashes of her uncle, Bob Russell, owner of Sundot Marine from 1984-1997.
Tell us your full name.
Christa Ann Russell
Where are you currently?
At my home in Kailua-Kona
Pretty shiny ones?!
Ahi or menpachi or kole cause they’re so ono.
Tell us about your most amazing fishing adventure.
I got to finally participate in the 2017 Huggos Wahine Fishing Tournament this past year which I have been wanting to do for years! I fished with a bunch of my friends on the Meleiwa. We didn’t catch anything but my team was awesome and we placed 3rd for costume/boat decorations!
Fishing aboard the Meleiwa, Kailua-Kona, Hawai'i
Team "Wicked Catch" at the Huggos Wahine Fishing Tournament 2017
Tell us about your job? Do you fish full time or do you have other money making specialties
I’m a police officer with Hawaii Police Department and currently work in Kona on patrol. In my free time, I love to surf if there’s waves. If it’s flat I enjoy anything outdoors including diving, hiking, fishing, and I'm always down to try or venture somewhere new! And traveling off the rock!!!
Favorite Big Island adventure?
Chasing the surf whether it be my home break at Banyans or across the island to Bowls in Poho'iki, Honoli'i, or even Waipi'o valley :)
Dream fishing destination?
Drink of choice?
Favorite place to have your drink of choice?
Watching the sunset at the beach.
What does Kailua-Kona mean to you?
Home, sweet home
Quote or saying you live by?
"You only live once ".
Christa adventuring on the Na Pali Coast, Kaua'i
How do you feel about fishing regulations in Hawaii? What needs to change?
I’m not very knowledgeable when it comes to fishing regulations but growing up I was always taught to only catch what you can eat and not be greedy so that there will be enough fish for everyone and so that the fish population doesn’t die out. It’s important that we have fishing regulations and that our marine and wildlife are protected.
Why do you love the ocean?
Surfing is my favorite thing in the world and keeps me sane & in shape! The ocean and all of its creatures are so amazing and beautiful.
How has Sundot Marine Flags influenced your life?
The company was founded by my grandma (my Mom’s Mom) whom I never got to meet but have heard so many great stories about. She founded such an awesome company because she was an amazing seamstress and even sewed costumes for the Wizard of Oz! She had a vision to have tobies match your bikini print back in the day, and made it happen! I’m so glad that this company is still thriving and run by my family!
How was your recent experience in Kaua'i spreading your Uncle Bob's ashes?
It was so amazing and lovely to see a lot of my family take some time to remember our beloved Robert Russell and scatter some of his ashes in the river next to our family land that my great grandma Amoe Akana was born on. Uncle Bobby’s goal was always to keep the family together and united and visioned our family land in Kauai to be a meeting place for us to have reunions. We got to have our first - of hopefully many - family reunions in Kauai on our beautiful family property in Anahola, right next to the river mouth that meets the ocean to Anahola Beach Park.
The Ohana spreading Uncle Bob Russell's ashes on Kaua'i
Tell us your favorite memory of Uncle Bob.
I have so many fond memories of my Uncle Bobby. He was like a father figure to me, very hard worker and was always there when I needed financial supoort growing up, which I am so grateful for. He gave me my first surfboard when I was younger and now surfing is such a huge part of my life. He was also a jokester and loved to make you smile. He was a great knee boarder, amazing fisherman and enjoyed learning about his Hawaiian heritage, culture and ancestors. He also cooked the best food whether it be fresh caught fish or kalua pig straight from his own imu.
Mahalo Christa for being such an epic part of our society here in Hawaii.