As the world watched the team from Honolulu claim the recent Little League World Series championship, fans were impressed by the skills.
But perhaps even more impressive, the way the boys acted both on and off the field, thanks in part to their motivational and inspirational head coach Gerald Oda.
He may not be wearing that now familiar blue and gold uniform, but there’s no mistaking coach Oda.
Almost a month after leading his team to the Little League World Series title, Oda is back at it, spending his afternoon in the place he loves most.
“Yeah right back into the swing of things. We are kind of actually behind schedule with this group of kids but it’s good because it’s a new group of kids,” said Oda.
The faces may be new but the lessons and his passion are the same as Hawaii and world witnessed first hand.
“Every story has a phrase behind it. We explain to the kids what is the meaning of having a great day enjoying the moment those type of things,” said Oda.
“You don’t have kids of your own yet you chose this route for yourself what keeps you motivated?” asked Howard Dashefsky. “The good thing about coaching is looking forward to when they get older to see how they progress that’s the most satisfying knowing that we have this opportunity to play a small little part and role in their lives,” answered Oda.
Ironically Oda is an investigator with an insurance company by day, often dealing with people who are far less than truthful or honorable.
It’s all the more reason he appreciates the kids and the chance to coach them and teach them. “No matter what kind of day I have my job, I always look forward to coming to the field, coaching the kids working with them so it kind of makes the day go by a lot smoother and easier,” he said.