7.29.2008

Keenan Tanaka



Bbcherie_keenan_normal

This is my 100th post and it's only right that this tribute is to Mr. Keenan Tanaka.  Let me introduce you.  Keenan has been a friend of my sister, Cherie, for a few years now.  About four months ago they decided to become an "official" couple.  Since they have made it official, when Cherie was still here in Hawaii, Keenan would buy her a fresh bouquet of flowers everyday.  Even before that Keenan liked to hang out with Cherie, my family and I.  There was one incident when Cherie, and I took the kids to Ala Moana mall and Keenan came along too.  We were heading down to Old Navy and decided to put the kids in the stroller on the elevator.  Keenan offered to help hold the double stroller up and when we got off he was still pushing the it.  As we were weaving in and out of people and clothes racks a group of boys Keenan's age walked right in front of us, almost in a smug way.  Keenan dropped his head in an irritated shame. (hard to explain) 
"Oh, I'm sorry Keenan.  I can push now."  I felt so bad that I humiliated him in front of guys his age.
"Oh what?" he said popping his head up.
"Yeah." Cherie chimed in, "Noelle you push.  Keenan you don't have to push if you're embarrassed?"
"What are you talking about?  Why would I be embarrassed?"
"There was a whole bunch of guys that walked in front of us and you hung your head like you were shamed."
"What?  No!  I was mad that those guys cut me off.  I have the kids with the stroller.  They should've moved!"
Cherie and I could not stop laughing!  This is the kind of guy Keenan is.  He told my mom and I the other day that we want's to have a job where he helps people.  So right now he's going to go to school to me an EMT.  He wakes up at the butt crack before dawn to drive his mom to the bus stop because he feels bad if she has to walk.  He helps his grandma and his parents with weeding the lawn and doing yard work on the weekdays and even the weekends.  His family always has Sunday dinner's at his grandma's house and he never misses it.  He'll bend over backwards to help anyone out.  He even made those wonderful pictures of Kurt and I on steroids to the right and is teaching me how to use photoshop, as you can see from my work above.  Keenan is an all around great kid.  Just recently Keenan has decided to take the missionary lessons and started to come to church regularly.  He was always a great supporter to Cherie and any of his other LDS friends whenever they sang in church or a fireside or gave a talk, if they invited him he was there.  The first Sunday he came to church he had a nice white shirt and tie with black slacks, his vans shoes, and a volcom belt.  He was so cute!  I had wanted to get a picture of him in his Sunday best but I'm not sure how easy that is going to be anymore.  You see, two missionary discussions ago they asked him if he wanted to be baptized.  Keenan said yes!  When he told his mom she was sadly against the idea.  He, being an obedient son, wasn't able to make it to church on Sunday.  Me having children of my own, if one of them came up to me and told me they were making a life changing decision, I would be just as concerned as his mom.  Especially if I wasn't familiar with the decision.  She's just doing this because she loves him.  Poor Keenan really wants to be baptized for all the right reason's but he's scared and saddened by the consequences.  I wish you could all feel how strong his spirit is.  I know satan is working extra hard on him.  I don't normally do something like this, I've actually never asked anybody for this before, but I'm asking whoever reads this to keep Keenan in your prayers.  Pray that his parents hearts will be softened.  And/or pray for the missionaries and the people they teach.  I've never had a missionary experience before but it is one of the most wonderful feelings in the world.  I was talking to Kurt the other day about when he was fresh in the mission field.  His conversion goal was 1,000 people.  His missionary president told him to choose a more realistic goal, but my point is I know exactly how Kurt felt as a young missionary.  You want to baptize the world.  You don't see everybody you pass by as some person.  You see them as a spirit you want to bring back to Heavenly Father.  Right now Keenan's baptismal date is Aug. 16th.  Cherie even got a ticket to fly down for it.  You know maybe nows not the right time, maybe it's still too early for him but I'm not giving up.  He's honestly like a brother to me and I love him to death.  I would do anything for him but right now I just want to start him on the right path to our Heavenly Father.

12 comments:

theJorgies said...

that is so difficult. poor Keenan...i can't imagine how torn his heart feels.

he's in our prayers, as well as the whole situation.

Kathryn said...

Keenan is such a great guy. And I remember his mom and her love and support of him and his activities from back in ELES days (speech festivals, etc). It will happen as they see the blessing that the Gospel of Jesus Christ is in his life. Maybe they would want to take the discussions too, to hear what he has heard and felt. We'll pray for the Spirit to touch and teach all their hearts.

Andrea Tyler said...

He sounds like a keeper Cherie! Everything will work out in time...The lord always has his own plan for us and others. I think there are lessons we need to learn from difficulties in life...It wouldn't be worth it if everything was so easy!?!

Jones Family said...

He is in our prayers, thank you for sharing that with everyone, it is such an awesome experience to see someone grow and learn in the gospel.

lyle and julia said...

you and your family are so cute in the support that you give Keenan...he seems like a great guy and has been in our prayers ever since we found out...I hope his parents will soften their hearts :)

Melissa said...

he sounds amazing. thanks so much for sharing what a good guy he is. it's good to hear about that stuff every now and again. we will pray for him.

Stewart Family said...

Sounds like a great guy! I think it is so true that mom's sometimes have a hard time with those life altering choices especially if it is something that they are not familiar with. Sean's mom didn't want him to get baptized either. He really felt like it was true and he should, so he still did it respectfully and they came to the baptism. She even read some anti-Mormon stuff at first, but then she seemed to change her mind. I think because he was so committed she really respected that his choice was sincere. She has even told me how good the church has been in Sean's life to make him a better person. It will all work out.

Carrie said...

It will all work out...yes, we will definitely keep him and his mom in our prayers!

The Gancinia Ohana said...

This is such a sweet story Noelle. Thank you for sharing it. We will keep Keenan in our prayers too!

iMaLLheaRt said...

What an amazing story. I love it. I will definitely keep him in our prayers!

Williams Family said...

I so know how he feels, my parents threatened to disown me when I got baptized. I am gonna try and come to the baptism, what time is it at? I have family from the mainland that day, but hoepfully it will work out, I would love to be there to support him. Let me know!

The Boyd's said...

That was the funniest story. I could not stop laughing. Strollers never get the right of way. : (

 
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