A passenger aboard the Maui Princess spotted a body of a male in the Lahaina Harbor roadstead upon the ferry’s entry into port. The unresponsive unidentified male was pulled aboard in pouring rain and efforts were made to resuscitate. The Maui Princess had passengers from Kaunakakai Harbor aboard. The Maui Princess is ferrying passengers while the Molokai Princess vessel is in dry dock.
Passengers waited to get off the boat while emergency crews boarded and attempted to revive the individual. Status of the individual is not known at this time.
The Maui Princess was unable to make its return trip to Kaunakakai Harbor that evening.
The sergeant on duty at the Maui Police Department is unable to confirm reports.
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12/31/14 8:08 AM
UPDATE, via Dec. 31 Maui Police news release: “Ramzey Hoopii, 41, resident of Waihee, Maui, was found floating lifeless in the ocean outside of Lahaina Harbor,” states the MPD. Lifesaving measures by emergency personnel were unable to save him. An autopsy is pending.
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UPDATE: 12/31/14 6:57PM
In a phone call late this afternoon Captain David Jung confirms that Ramzey Hoopii was a passenger on the Maui Princess going to Lahaina Harbor from Kaunakakai Harbor.
“The Lanai ferry had run aground,” says Jung. “We were waiting outside the harbor for the Lanai Ferry when one of the passengers saw a body floating face down. Later one of the crew recognized Hoopii as one of the passengers. Nobody had seen him leave the vessel. Nobody saw him go over the rail.”
According to Jung the crew immediately did CPR on Hoopii and the boat found access to the docks quickly to let EMT personell on board. Hoopii was pronounced dead in the ambulance after about 30 minutes.
“How he was able to get up and over the rail we can only speculate,” says Jung. “The weather was rough. Crew members that had seen Hoopii earlier said he did not look sea sick or woozy. The railings are high so you cant fall over them.”
Jung said the upper deck had already been cleared.
“The boat was full of people, how could someone get off the boat unobserved,” says Jung. “It does take an act of forethought to get up and over the side. He had some head injuries when he was brought on to the boat. We have had instances of people jumping off of the boat. Six months ago a prisoner with handcuffs jumped off board.”
Ramzey Hoopii is part of entertainer Richard Hoopii’s family.
“I have great respect for the Hoopii family,” says Jung. “The Hoopii’s have played on the boat before. My sympathies go out to the family.”