We’ve lost another beloved acting star as Al Harrington has passed away. Al Harrington, one of the few last surviving cast members of the original Hawaii Five-O, reportedly died on Tuesday in Honolulu after suffering a stroke last week. His death has also been confirmed by his family. He was 85 years old.
“I have had the honor of loving Al, whom I called ‘Harrington’ for 20-years,” Rosa Harrington, Al’s wife, said in a statement. “We were an inseparable team; best friends and he was my regal Polynesian King. Al embodied the purest, life-giving values of aloha and began each day with a smile.”
“Admiration, respect, humor, peace, and joy are those attributes that one can ascribe to Al Harrington,” added longtime agent Gregory David Mayo.
Harrington was born as Tausau Ta’a in Pago Pago, American Samoa. He was just three years old when he relocated with his mother to Honolulu and remained a lifelong Hawaiian. After attending Menlo College and Stanford University, he started teaching history classes at the University of Hawaii. Always the performer, he also started working in entertainment in Waikiki, earning the moniker of “The South Pacific Man.” By the 1970s and into the 80s, he had become a household name in Hawaii.
As an actor, Al Harrington is best known as one of the supporting stars of the police drama series Hawaii Five-O. The show aired for 12 seasons from 1968-1980 and continues to be broadcast in syndication across the world. Shot on location in Honolulu and throughout Hawaii, the show follows a police force with Ben Kokua appearing in the show as Detective Ben Kokua.
Decades later, Harrington would revisit the series with a role on the reboot Hawaii Five-0, which also aired on CBS. He had a much more substantial role in this series as Mamo Kahike, a man who owns a surf rental shop at Waikiki Beach and works as a bus driver. Harrington stuck around in a recurring role as the character until this incarnation of the series ended in 2018, though it also had a pretty good run with ten seasons.
In response to the news of Al Harrington’s death, Hawaii Five-0 reboot star Daniel Dae Kim took to Twitter to write, “Just learned this sad news today, too. No matter the circumstance, Al always brought positive energy and aloha to our set. He will be missed by those of us in Hawaii, and beyond.”
A Latter-day Saint, Harrington also had a lead role in the LDS Church-produced movie The Testaments. It depicts the life of Jesus in Jerusalem along with the events described in the Book of Mormon. The actor also played Thomas Trueblood in Light of the World, A Celebration of Life, which was hosted by the LDS Church in Salt Lake City during the Olympics in 2002.
Al Harrington’s survivors include his wife, Rosa Harrington, sons Alema and Tau, daughters Summer Harrington and Cassi Harrington Palmer, and several grandchildren. Our thoughts go out to them at this dark time. May he rest in peace as his memory lives on. This news comes to us from Deadline.