BREAKING: Hawai‘i County Mayor Harry Kim Medevaced to O‘ahu as Precaution
Hawai’i County Mayor Harry Kim has been medevaced to The Queens Medical Center in Honolulu as a precautionary measure after experiencing chest pains early Thursday.
The 78-year-old mayor drove himself to Hilo Medical Center around 4:30 a.m. and proceeded to call Managing Director Wil Okabe and other staff to notify them of the situation.
He was medevaced to Oʻahu around 6:45 a.m.
County officials say Mayor Kim has had three previous heart attacks, and underwent quadruple bypass
surgery in 2008.
“He knows the symptoms, and he knows what to do,” said Okabe who will serve as Acting Mayor while Mayor Kim is on sick leave. “We’re offering prayers for Harry, knowing that he’ll be back very shortly.”
Hawai‘i Governor David Ige today issued a statement saying, “Mayor Kim has a fighting spirit and I know he’ll want to be back at work serving the people of Hawai‘i County as quickly as possible. I wish him a speedy and complete recovery.”
US Representative Tulsi Gabbard also shared her thoughts in a Tweet today saying: “Sending my aloha and prayers to Mayor Harry Kim, his ʻohana, and our Hawaiʻi Island community. Best wishes for a speedy recovery.”
An emergency meeting of the County Department heads and executive staff was held to let everyone know about the situation.
“We’re going to continue to do the work; everyone assured me that they’re committed to carrying out the mission we always have – of making this a better place to live,” Okabe said. “Harry has confidence in everybody that they’ll continue the mission.”