Kahuku High & Intermediate will remain as the home of the Red Raiders.

That’s according to multiple community members who were told by school principal Dr. Donna Lindsey on Wednesday evening as part of a community council meeting.

This past weekend it was revealed that the administration would be following a recommendation from the Department of Education’s Civil Rights Compliance Branch (CRCB) to change their Red Raider mascot and tomahawk chop celebration.

At first it was believed that the Red Raiders nickname which has been part of the school since the 1950’s after the program received uniform donations from ‘Iolani, which was then known as the Red Raiders leading Kahuku to adopt that moniker and move away from its previous Ramberiers/Ramblers nickname.

According to former state champion and proud Kahuku graduate, former University of Hawaii defensive back Leonard Peters, the community being able to keep the Red Raider name along with the tradition of being a ‘Red Raider For Life’ is something that he and many others are grateful to hear.

“I think it’s huge. The Red Raider, the Kahuku Red Raider name is like our last name. That’s how much we love it. My nephews or all the people from that side. The alumni and everything,” Peters told KHON2 Sports Director Rob DeMello on Thursday. “At the end of the day to be honest, we’ve done everything to try and get away from the Indian. If you look at the progression of the (logo) head, like everybody is saying that’s offensive. We tried to change everything. The shape of the nose, the sharpness of the chin, putting the tribal tattoo down the face. Changing the feathers from feathers to red ti leaves. You’re not going to please everybody, you’re just not going to please everyone.”

At this time it is believed that the program will continue to work with a third party to establish “stakeholder groups” that will work towards “finding a new mascot that is not based on race, color, ancestry, and national origin.” That is something that Peters hopes can be adjusted to have community members involved in the process of selecting a new identity for the school.

“That’s all we’re asking. It’s just for us in the community to have a say. All we’re asking to say is let us be a part of what our identity is going to be. Make it look like Tanoai Reed or make it look like me, or make it look like somebody that is Polynesian so that nobody has a say,” added Peters. “just let us have a voice you know? Don’t bring in a third party that doesn’t know anything. If you want to bring in a third party, let them live in La’ie, or Kahuku, or Hau’ula for three nights. Then they’ll see what we’re all about.”