Greenbank has over 100 years of recorded spiritual encounters. Some of the first reported concerns arose when the house was built in the same location as a Hawaiian Heiau. Another major concern was the fact that Dr. Wight intentionally ignored warnings from local Kahuna’s when he built the home directly over a young girl’s grave. Topping the situation off came when he decided to place an extremely evil Stone or Shark God at the base of his veranda. The following stories are recollections and reported incidents over the years from family descendants. Some recollections are more recent than others.
The Jewell of the Big Island
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GREENBANK - Honolulu Advertiser, February 22, I973
By Mary Cooke
(Lead ghost photo to the ghost story page was attached to this article in 1973)
An untenanted, haunted house, whose owner wanted it to remain furnished as it was at the time of her death in 1915 was sold at a private family auction, Tuesday. Greenbank, the 22 acre Wight estate in Kohala, Hawaii, was bought by Mr. and Mrs. Wilfred Hunt of Honolulu. Mrs. Hunt is a great-grand-daughter of Mrs James Wight who, with her husband, built Greenbank.
Mrs Wight left Greenbank and its furnishings for the use of her descendents for 21 years after the death of her last child. She set aside $600 a year to maintain the property. The sum became inadequate to cover maintenance, the house became uninhabitable but the terms of the will were not broken. Greenbank, once a show place on the Big Island, stood dark and silent, it's paint, furniture, books and fabrics fading under layers of dust. Although Mrs. Wight's descendants respected her wishes, others did not.
Since World War II, looters have entered Greenbank and destroyed or taken the furnishings. Doors have been left open and rain and wind have beaten in through broken windows. "There's nothing left of the furniture," said Mrs Amy Rich, a grand daughter of Mrs. Wight. "Hippies roared round in it (Greenbank) and soldiers took a terrific amount during the war.
WHETHER the ghost of Greenbank deserted the house after it was looted is still a question. Some say the ghost is still there. Mrs. Rich said, "The ghost is finished.
'•One night when I was 8 years old (and living at Greenbank) I woke and saw a dark thing leaning over me. It was an evil thing. People used to see lights going round the house, but that's finished now".
Greenbank was built by Dr and Mrs James Wight who came to Hawaii from Australia in 1850. They were on their way to gold fields of California when their ship was wrecked off Mahukona, Medical doctors were needed in that remote part of the Big Island and the Wights were persuaded to stay.
Dr. Wight hauled wreckage from the ship over the Kohala mountains by horse cart and used some of the timber to build Greenbank. He became a judge during the reign of Kamehameha V, operated a ranch at Mahukona and worked with Ellas Bond to start Kohala Plantation.
THE WIGHTS had 13 children, six of whom died before they were grown. One of the surviving daughters was Mrs Rich's mother.
"My widowed mother, my sister and I lived in the guest cottage at Greenbank," Mrs Rich said. "Grandfather and Grandmother and my five aunts were in the main house.
"Life was very strict there and my grandmother Wight was definitely a grande dame, even in the country.
"Her oak sideboard in the dining room was beautifully carved and the table was set with damask and beautiful china, crystal and silver candelabra. There were linen sheets on the beds and lace curtains in twe Windows.
The Young Girl in the Hidden Grave at Greenbank
Dan & Mary Delasantos Wedding, October 17, 1988
What I'm about to share is not for public knowledge until such time I become more comfortable with it. I have shared this information with only a few family members so the true story doesn’t get lost.
In 1987 I had met Mary Huffman in Hawaii Kai, Oahu. We moved in together later that year. I was in construction sales at the time and had already spent a number of years researching Hawaiian family history through my Grandmother Mary Wight Gunderson, The Bishop museum and other state archives. I had several instances since I was a child, which included visions while I was awake and voices on occasion. I had passed most of it off as daydreaming until my first prediction came true when I was 16 years olds. While visiting a story in California, an old friend and I began to shop around for some clothing. While strolling through the store, I explained to him we would be meeting someone from my past. I hadn’t seen the person for over 4 years and continued to explain that this individual would be from a school I had gone to in California some time ago before moving to Arizona. With in minutes of my premonition, the elevator door opened and there she was, Shara Valenzwala whom I hadn’t seen since elementary school 4 years earlier in another State. It wasn’t a guess; I actually knew I was going to see someone.
Going forward in life, I would pay attention to things that would for no reason take me in different directions or visions that came true. My uncle Cliff Delasantos also had the gift. He drew out 6 of the 7 locations (with in 100 yards) for the 1969 earthquakes in California 6 months before it happened. Although he didn’t know what it meant till the quake hit, he too was continually guided on paper.
It wasn’t till I was in my late 20’s that I had found out about our uncle Charlie and Auntie Leah who first had the gift of second sight. Both of them were known to be God fearing individuals and would never use their gift out side their religious beliefs. Their local community had such great faith in their ability; town folk wouldn’t make a move with out first checking their future first with either of these family members. At the end, they had predicted two family members of the next generation would have their ability in some form to see what others couldn’t.
Years later at our home in Hawaii Kai with witnesses (Cliff’s Daughter Christy), Cliff and I turned photos of the graves upside down and waved our hands over all the graves at Greenbank. With the photos shuffled each time and one of us out of the room each time, we both chose Ada's grave. We both concurred there was a problem with her death, perhaps violent. This was several months before we uncovered the death at sea which confirmed it was Ada who died a horrible drowning.
In 1988 the voices came while living in Hawaii Kai with Mary. For no reason at all a young girls voice would haunt me saying, "come". It didn't hit home till later in the year.
Weeks later after the first voice incident, I took a return plane flight back to Hawaii during a visit to Arizona. While in flight having a cocktail at the front of the plane, I had a conversation with a traveler from the Big Island bragging about an encounter he had on a piece of property in North Kohala. He boasted about operating some heavy equipment, and doing some difficult landscaping work, he and his coworkers spent several nights on the property. Further conversation revealed that on a particular occasion, one of his coworkers woke up one evening in horror unable to get out of his bed. Two of his coworkers tried to pry him out of the bed thinking he was simply having a bad dream. They were unable to free him and began to panic. The boys’ legs were ice cold and they had though they heard laughter coming from above during the whole episode. All at once, the boy, with the help of his friends, sprang from the bed. He left the property that night. He later called from an outer Island requesting his paycheck be sent to at a new location.
At that point, I took a moment to introduce myself and explain how I too knew of a family property with similar escapades. When the name Greenbank came out of my mouth, the young mans face went pale. This in fact was the property he had just spoken of. Attempting to confirm this highly improbable coincidence, I asked him to describe the directions to the property and he did so with out flaw.
Now back in Hawaii Kai, I went on with life as usual, measuring roofs around the Island of Oahu and selling roofing products. Some weeks later, I was in Makaha, a town on the far North end of the island. By phone, I was instructed to measure a roof and provide a reroofing estimate to the homeowner. After doing so, I left my business card in the door jam and continued home for the evening. Days had past and still no word from the homeowner. This was a common occurrence so I though nothing of the assumed loss of revenue. Then the phone call came. The man on the phone apologized for taking so long to get back with me, he was off Island visiting friends and asked if I would come to his home so that he could give me a deposit check to begin work on his roof. This was extremely rare, since it normally takes some sales work and pricing to close a reroofing job. But never to look a gift horse in the mouth, I set off across the Island to meet with Mr. and Mrs. Watanabe.
Upon my arrival, he and his wife graciously welcomed me into their home. The first words out of their mouth were, “we’re so sorry we were delayed in getting back with you, we were visiting an old friend on the Big Island”. The husband went on to describe the area and the unusual property directly above where they stayed. At this point I had said nothing to indicate my connection with the Big Island or Greenbank. He continued to describe the ghosts of the property and how their family friend was a Kahuna and so were several generations of men in his family. Once they defined the location, I was compelled to share with them who I was and how I was connected with the property they spoke of. They both stopped dead in their tracks and became deafeningly silent. They in turn asked their own confirming questions to conclude that I was in fact a Wight descendant.
Keep in mind that Greenbank has been a close nit secret shares by vary few residence of North Kohala. Its location is off the beaten path and even with directions, it can be difficult to find. The old Wight estate hasn’t been a popular location for more than 80 years, so what was drawing me to these highly unusual encounters? It became shockingly clear with in hours. When I left the Watanabe home, I had called Mary to ask her what she thought of going to Greenbank for her birthday. She wasn’t keen on the idea and suggested we go to Maui or Kauai for the occasion. I concurred and hung up the phone. Now traveling back to Hawaii Kai, the drive seemed longer than expected. Turning on my stereo would provide a pleasant past time during the drive. Now 15 minutes into the drive, I once again heard the young girls voice calling me. This time however, she was extremely persistent, and over powered the music I was listening to. Being somewhat skeptical, I shut off the music, pulled the car over and still her voice persisted, come…come. She had never once said come to Greenbank or go to the Big Island, but there was absolutely no doubt in my mind what the request meant, I needed to go to Greenbank and soon.
Arriving home, I described to Mary not only my visit with the Watanabe’s but the female voice that continued to speak to me. I suggested we needed to reconsider our weekend destination and she agreed. What Mary didn’t know was that I had planned on proposing marriage on her Birthday. Later that evening, while lying in bed, I described to Mary a new type of vision I was having right then at the moment. With out sound and without color, I was witnessing a silloett or “negative exposure” vision. Later through some photography research, I would identify the two individuals in the “movie like” vision as Jane and Dr. James Wight. In the vision she was scolding him severely while he sat patiently in his high back chair and resting his limbs on the arms of this sturdy piece of furniture.
Realizing this was something I had no real experience with, excitement turned to concern. I consulted my Auntie Nuni and asked if she could recommend a Kahuna (Hawaiian Priest) to lend a hand with this situation and perhaps come to the Big Island and bless the property. After introductions, I discussed at length with the Kahuna what had happened over the months, along with the voices and visions.
I continued to explain that the young girl who spoke to me had perhaps experienced a violent death and some form of disgrace. In addition, there was something happening to her now that was having catastrophic ramifications. The Kahuna confirmed his intent to come with us to visit Greenbank. Once there, I would have the land blessed, find out what was causing the problems, propose to Mary and life would be grand.
Once the plane hit the ground in Kailua Kona, I was overwhelmed with a grieving feeling. It was as if the little girl new I was there and she had no patients. Rather than check into our hotel, Mary and I drove the 1.5-hour drive in the dark to Greenbank. Now on the property with only a flashlight and our headlights on, we were both overwhelmed with an amazing presence. While my thoughts were to look down in the gulch toward the grave, Mary was consumed by an unmistakable presence behind her, which happened to be in the direction of the old homestead location. We both new we were not alone and by all accounts we were excepting an unusual invitation just by being their.
We returned to the Hilton Waikoloa to check in and get settled. I made the call to the Kahuna who was supposedly in route to the Big Island to rendezvous with us the next day. Reaching him back in Oahu was one of the most unnerving experiences I can recall through the whole ordeal. He spoke of his contact with the spirits of Greenbank over the last couple of days warning him not to come, he was not welcome. He went on to explain how they were expecting me and that it was now up to me to fulfill what destiny was in store when it was my time. This unraveled me a bit since this adventure was now becoming undeniably real. My Grandmother and others had explained over the years that situations like this that were handled poorly, could leave the individual mentally damaged or perhaps not coming away from it at all. Going to the property and attempting communication could in fact become dangerous.
I discussed the days events with Mary and explained things weren’t going as planned. I finally divulged that I had planned to propose on Greenbank and that without the Kahuna to bless the property; I was extremely weary of going forward with my plans. Mary and I have always had the ability to know what the other is thinking and doing. We have taken it for granted for years but never was it as important as it was during this particular weekend. She too had thought this would be a wonderful opportunity to suggest our marriage so we where on the same page. During the next hour of conversation and confirming our love and bond to each other, we concluded that proposing wasn’t going to get it, however getting married that weekend on Greenbank would be exactly what we both would like. We contacted our families, explaining our intent for the upcoming weekend and with their blessing, we began to make plans.
The next day we set out to find all the necessary elements for our wedding that would take place in less than 48 hours. Wedding rings, the dress, our marriage license, a blood test, pastor, cake, best man, brides made, flowers and oh yeh…a full blooded Kahuna!
We bought the only two matching rings on the Island and had a company drive several hours across the island to show us what would be the only dress we both liked for the wedding. Our good friend Dan Bearth who owned a bakery would provide the cake and double as a brides made. Richard Alpert, a close friend of both Mary and I would fly in from Oahu to be the best man. The following day we managed the license and blood test.
After completing our tasks, we dropped our belongings off at the hotel and made our way out to Greenbank to spend the night in one of the huts still standing at the time. Arriving early that day, we met with John Dowie (property owner at the time) and his work crew. John described a situation where one of the tractors being used to clear the old Wight family house from its 150-year-old location had suddenly stopped running where the house sat. At that point, the operator experienced an unnerving experience. The ground began to shake violently, to the point where the operator jumped from the drivers seat and ran from the property. Later, after countless hours of effort, mechanics failed to restart the tractor. Surprisingly or not, once they moved the vehicle from the house site, it immediately started and was driven away. Go figure! The Local Kahuna suggested they should no longer use heavy equipment to move the debris from such a sacred place. You see the upper land of the homestead was once a Heiau several years before, potentially dating back as far as the 14,00’s. A Heiau was a Hawaiian place of worship and sacrifice (food, clothing and some times humans) but it was also where women would come for miles to bare their children or those in trouble would run to repent and be forgiven.
I told John and his staff the complete story of my premonition and visions regarding the little girl. John suggested I speak with Tommy Solomon, the local 5 to 6 generation Kahuna who lived just below Greenbank. I would later find out that Tommy and his family were the Watanabe’s friends mentioned earlier in the story. Followed by John and his crew, we walked down to visit with Tommy. It turns out he had a severe bout of diabetes and had already lost a leg. I spoke to Tommy about my visions and the little Girl. That’s when the story began to unfold and make perfect sense.
Tommy knew of the little girl in my dreams and new exactly why she was calling me. I apparently was the only one who could hear her and be able to set things straight as he put it. She had not been from the age of the Wight family, as many would believe. She was an English or mainland girl living with the Hawaiians in the area several years before the Wight family. Perhaps she lived there against her will. She was very young and the story of her violent death had been past down for decades. She had died a horrible death according to Tommy but with the medication and his failing health, he couldn’t recall the details. But this was not the cause of my encounter with her. The real cause for the voices and visions was now made clear to me. The little girl who was raised by Hawaiians was buried directly under the Wight family home. Tommy went on to say how Dr. Wight was told not to build his house in this spot because of the incredible disgrace he would be imposing not only on the little girl but the Hawaiian culture.
Disregarding all warnings, Dr. Wight did in fact build his home right over the grave. I later pinpointed the graves existence and location at the house site by the small smooth oval stones that commonly marked Hawaiian graves like these. The stones were not from the immediate area and had to be transported from the coastal shoreline a few miles away at the time of her death. When the home was being demolished and removed, the girls’ grave was once again being violently disturbed. It’s my belief she was in fear of having her grave unearthed. In Hawaii, graves are only 2 or 3 feet deep in some areas due to the infancy of the island. Lava rock is just a few feet below the surface. Now I had a much better understanding of why I was needed here at Greenbank. There were introductions to be made, apologies to be offered and a blessing to take place in both the Hawaiian and English language.
That evening, the weather turned into what novels are written about. Clouds, lightning and thunder all made up the nights atmosphere. For some reason though there was no rain. After getting down on my knee in the hut and proposing to Mary, we spent some quiet time together. I then excused myself from the hut and ventured out to the house site by myself. If there was to be any danger, I didn’t want my wife to be involved.
As I walked down the path to the now vacant area were the house once sat, I could feel the little girls presence knowing full well that Hawaiian spirits from hundreds of years past also tend to frequent this area. I expected fear and nervousness to overwhelm me; instead I felt embraced with a warm calming feeling. I began to verbally make my apologies for not only John Dowie’s disregard for her grave, but also the terrible injustice her grave received from the Wight family including the Dr. building his home on top of her burial ground. As I walked near or over her grave, it was as if electricity made it’s way up from the ground and through my body. Once I stepped aside it subsided. I now knew exactly where her grave was. Looking off to the North of the house site, I saw what I could only describe as looking through water. A small shapeless figure moved away from a near by tree and directly toward me. While there was no face or arms, I could feel the embrace that came from this 4-foot faceless image. After just a few moments, she moved back toward the tree and was gone as fast as she appeared. Tommy had given me her name as it was passed down to him but he was not certain he had the name right. (I’m not sure I have the name correct after all these years) “Kalele I believe is your name” I said to the little girl, “and if I have it wrong just let me know and I’ll try and get it right”.
I then went back to the little shack were we had pushed two old single roller beds together to make our bed and stay the night. As Mary and I drifted off to sleep, hours passed and the night grew still. This is when things once again got a little unnerving.
Mary was sound asleep next to me when my bed began to move backwards and forwards in a jerking motion. I abruptly sat up in my bed in amazement. I looked around and saw that Mary was still asleep. Assuming I was just having a bad nights sleep, I fell back asleep. It’s my assumption a few hours went by then it happened again. Each time I sprang up, the movement of my bed would immediately stop. Now I was convinced something was up but I had no clue what it was. I then tried to go back to sleep. After about a half hour I managed to doze off. Once again I was awaken by the vigorous movement of my bed, only this time I was awake and sitting up as the bed continued to move back and forth. I rubbed my eyes and abruptly said, I’ve got it, I have your name wrong and I’ll make sure to find out what it should be. As God is my witness, the bed stopped moving as if someone had turned the switch off on a lamp. When I asked Mary if she had felt anything, she shook her head no. I even lent to the possibility someone was pulling a prank from out side. When I checked the area around the hut, leaves surrounded it. No one could have come near us with out making a considerable amount of noise while coming or going.
The next morning, we awoke to a beautiful day. We needed to get back to Kailua Kona to finish our arrangements for the wedding. For days I had tried to find Cattleya Orchids much like those first introduced to Hawaii by Jane and James Wight in the 1800’s. No matter how hard we looked, I just couldn’t find what I was looking for. Time was running out and I needed to find a Kahuna. As it turned out, an old woman, which famous horticulturist Ernie Chew and I interviewed weeks before, happened to be a Kahuna in Kapa’au the better part of her life. At age 83, she fondly recalled memories as a young child walking through Greenbank and seeing Jane Wight in her final years. She gladly consented to come and bless the land just before we were to be married.
The night before our wedding, I was down in the lobby of our hotel and realized I had never properly asked Mary out on a date. I called up to the room and announced how I would like to take her out for the evening and she consented. We reviewed our plans for the following day and made an early evening of it.
The next day we awoke and began to execute our days plan to be married. We had all the arrangements in place with rides from the airport to the arrival of our wedding party on site at Greenbank. Walking out of the Hotel lobby, we realized our worst fear was beginning to unfold. As we looked out over the skies above the entire North Kohala coast, all we saw were deep black rain clouds compounded by wind and rain. No matter, we were going to be married on Greenbank rain or shine. We made our way toward the property with just one stop left to make. I had heard a rumor of a small greenhouse that may just have the Cattleya Orchid we were seeking for Mary’s wedding bouquet. Traveling closer yet to Kohala, the sky grew darker and the wind began to pick up. We found our homegrown florist along the way and stopped in to take a look. Sure enough, they had exactly what we had been looking for, an almost exact copy of the orchid displayed in Jane Wight’s 1880 photo of her greenhouse. Now with everything in hand, we continued on toward Greenbank. As we drove the twisting road, which leads up to the properties driveway, we could only see black sky.
Now as we drove past the main gate and made our way up to park near the old homestead, a wonderful thing began to happen. As each of our wedding party began to disembark from their cars, the winds began to subside. Mary and I stepped out of our car and began to look upward. As we did, miraculously as if God himself had granted a special wish, the clouds abruptly opened up just above Greenbank. I have never seen anything like it before nor I have I seen anything like it since. The skies above our wedding were clear and the sun was shining through. Looking just beyond the boundaries of Greenbank, the black clouds that were strewn across the Kohala coastline were mysteriously held back by what seemed like an invisible wall. Now things were at their best. Mary looked radiant in her wedding muumuu, ginger lei and Haku lei around her head. Her beautiful Cattleya Orchid bouquet she put together only enhanced her beauty that day. I had on a traditional white button down shirt and pants with a blue sash rapped around my waist. I topped it off with a Haku Lei around my head and a green Maile lei draped over my shoulders.
Now it was time to bless the young girls grave and the land that had so much turbulence over the years. Our Kahuna stepped out over the homestead and at my request, blessed the property in both Hawaiian and English. I could feel the release of pain and disappointment as she spoke the words that were so long overdue. It was now time for our wedding to take place. Mary and I exchanged our vows on the blessed ground of our ancestors. This was a foundation of love and respect, which has lasted all these years. As we walked the property bare foot and in our wedding cloths, there was a tremendous feeling of piece that I had never felt before on Greenbank.
Now it was time to leave Greenbank and I couldn’t help but feel as though I was leaving someone behind. As we began to get into our cars, the sky began to quickly close up just as it had opened hours before. Now in our vehicles, we began to drive down the road leading to the main road.
The rain began to fall and just as we went through the gates, I explained to my new wife, that I could hear the cries of a child once again but there was a distinct difference this time. Her cries didn’t have the pain I once heard, they seemed to be more like the cries of a child when their parent leaves for the weekend. I once again promised to get her name correct as I took my last glimpse of Greenbank that year.
Once I returned to Oahu, I called Tommy Solomon and explained we had the name wrong. He seemed to already know and said he would help me get it right. Weeks had gone by with out a word. Then one afternoon, I received a call from one of Tommy’s children.
Tommy his son said, was to weak to come to the phone but he said it was important that he get me the right name of the little girl. Kelili or Kalili (Again, I have forgotten the correct name over the years). On a return trip to visit the young girls grave, I spoke her correct name and hoped I had the right pronunciation. Again I suggested that she let me know if I had it wrong. To date, she has not suggested I made a mistake. I believe that I had her name correct the second time around.
When I stopped in to pay my respects and say thank you to Tommy Solomon for his help in the matter, I was told the disappointing news. Tommy had died shortly after sharing the young girls name with me. His family expressed their fathers interest over the whole incident and said he was very glad things where handled so well.
On my return visits to Greenbank, I have always felt welcomed. I have not had a reoccurrence of the visions and voices that once moved me so strongly to seek out the problems. Now, 16 years later I thought that perhaps I no longer had the ability to hear beyond the voices of day-to-day life or see what others can’t see, but I was wrong.
Wight Family Descendant
The Evil Stone God
Late 1800's encounter by the Wight Family and Lino the caretaker
The Evil Stone or Shark God: Another problem was that Dr. Wight also placed the evil stone God in front of the house and faced it toward the porch. This thing is mean and I mean that in every sense of the word. I have seen it up close and personal at the Bishop Museum on Oahu and it still gives me the willies. Archeologists have dated this, the only shark god with a face ever discovered on any of the islands back as far as the 1300 to 1400’s. Lino the Kahuna and care taker of Greenbank (see photo) would turn the stone to face the ocean but James insisted it face the house. For those who are in tune with the Kapu (Hawaiian cultural law/religion) this is something you never ever do. It upsets the local spirits something awful to the point of disaster or death. By coincidence or not this is when multiple Wight children began to have accidents or die from unusual circumstances.
Greenbank Ghost Stories
The articles, recollections and stories of the ghosts of Greenbank recorded and archived on this webpage are for historical purposes. It is at the discretion of the reader to determine the value or disbelief of each story.
Lino would continue to feed the stone God water and food each day and attempt to turn the stone back to the ocean but James continually denied the existence of any such spiritual nonsense. While traveling to the mainland one of the daughters came up with the plan to donate the stone to the Bishop Museum in his absent. It was donated in his name so that he would never consider the insult of requesting its return to the homestead. History suggests that the minute the stone left the property the family problems were resolved. The stone still faces the ocean to this day.
Comments by Amy Rich: Lino was a remarkable character as Amy Rich remembers him. He was the gardener and the creator of much of the garden like foliage in the Greenbank area. But he was more than a gardener. He had a house of his own, and he was well thought of by all members of the family. Amy recalled that Jane would sometimes put him down as being a silly Hawaiian. But everyone else, especially Amy, really loved him. He was pure Hawaiian. And when I asked Amy if he was A spiritual man, she said, "Of course he was. All of the old Hawaiians were. It was born into them." She said it was Lino who found a rock carving apparently with a face on it, either at the edge or in a cane field, down near the ocean. xt.
She gestured towards Pololu and said that the cliff by the ocean where the figure was found was about twenty feet high or so.
Lino brought the figure back to the family and it was considered a prize possession.
However, Amy figured that once the figure was a part of the family the, turbulence that tore the family apart started. She said people had all kinds of trouble. There was illness, insanity, family members hating each other-and fighting with each other. She said that every day Lino would take wet tea leaves and water and would sprinkle them around the statue and chant Hawaiian phrases. The turbulence in the family continued to get stronger until Amy, who was convinced that the figure somehow caused the turbulence in the family, decided to give the figure to the Bishop Museum. Apparently some family members resisted, but Amy did it quickly and quietly, and when others protested she said "It's done, it's over, they have it already." Amy said once the figure was out of the family, the turbulence stopped suddenly. She said there was no more illness or fighting, but that most of the family members were so stunned and seared by the turbulent period that they were never again able to relate to each other in the happy loving way they had done before.
Lino was a bachelor. He was a good man in every respect, Amy said he drank a little every once in awhile, but no one seemed to care about that. The house that she and her mother and sister lived in was apparently attached to Lino's house. She said that they took their meals in the big house with their grandfather and grandmother but that Lino did his own cooking and did his eating in his house. No one could ever cook anything for Lino. He did it all himself she said.
One of the fascinations that couldn’t be ignored was staircase and what appeared to be a small living area under its steps. There was a small window that could only be opened from the outside and straw spread across the tiny room’s floor as if to make a bed. It appeared lived in as one descendant recalls.
In the day, this would have been were a simply minded child might have been kept in the event of arriving guests or social dignitaries. In the 1800’s to have a simple minded child in the family suggested a weak blood line or level of strength in the family so these children were hidden or sent away to hospitals and asylums. If the family chose to keep the child they would have places like the staircase room to tuck the children away while entertaining guests.
Its thought that perhaps one of the ghost of Greenbank may be just such a sibling from the past.
The Staircase with the Secret Room
The Staircase at Greenbank has been the topic of discussion for many years amongst the Wight descendants. There was talk through the generations suggesting on or more children where simply minded or not mentally developed.
In the 60’s and 70’s descendants would visit the old estate home in its declining years. It was in Jane Wight’s will that the home be kept in suitable condition for surviving siblings to come and stay at Greenbank. The furniture and amenities were to stay in the home intact. Abusive military solders and hippies of the 60’s ravaged the property and pillaged its valuable artifacts. In addition, the $600 a year provided by the will was no longer adequate to maintain the estate and the property began to deteriorate.
The Gathering in the Greenbank Living Room
In the mid 60’s or 70’s a visitor to Greenbank drove up to the estate one afternoon to view the property. She walked up onto the veranda and knocked on the door out of respect. With no answer she entered what appeared to be the living room of the house.
As she entered the room it was filled with people. Noticeably, these guests were all wearing older clothing including stove top hats. They paid her no attention and assuming she was unwelcome she departed with out hesitation assuming an invitation would have been more appropriate.
Venturing down to one of the neighboring homes to visit she mentioned she the episode she had just encountered moments earlier. With some what of a puzzled look the neighbor questioned what she saw and suggested that that was impossible. Further conversation would reveal that know one had lived in the house for several years and that basically it was uninhabitable.
Convinced of what she saw they drove back up to the house and confidently walked back into the house through the same door. Amazed, the young woman walked through the door only to find a room full of dust and debris where no one had set foot in for years.
Explaining what she had previously encountered just minutes before became difficult. How could this have happened she asked? At that point it’s our understanding that neighbor explained the history of unusual sightings and occurrences to her. Its unclear exactly what she actually saw in the old house but she remained convinced of what she had seen that afternoon.
The Plane Flight
While flying to the Mainland in early 1988 I was standing in the rear of the plain. At that time the airlines allowed passengers to smoke in the rear of the plain. While having a smoke I was in conversation with multiple people enjoying the same past time.
Keeping in mind none of us had a clue who each other were, a few stories began to pop up.
There were the standard stories of their experiences on Waikiki Beach and various other parts of the islands that I had hear time and again after living in the islands for about 5 years at that point. However one story caught my ear with an alarming familiarity.
As young gentlemen began to spin his yarn, I leaned in and listened closely. He began his story talking about working on a rather large property over on the Big Island and how some very nerving occurrences began to unfold while he was working there.
He explained how he and a few other workers had been hired to clear some land of debris. One of the tasks was to level and remove an old house from its foundation. While running a tractor, one of the workers felt the ground shake furiously under the tractor. About that time the tractor quit running and the operator hopped down from the driver seat and left the property permanently. Later on they had several Mechanics attempt to start the tractor with no success. Once it was pulled off the site the engine started right up the job was finished by hand.
At this point I was fascinated at the detail he was sharing about this situation. Then he told me what convinced him he had had enough of Hawaii.
He and his fellow workers where spending the nights on this property since there were no inexpensive provisions in Hawi or Kapa’au at the time. One evening while sleeping on cots one of his fellow workers complained of hearing screaming or chanting near his cot. No one else heard a thing. At that point he began to complain of something holding him down as he attempted to get off the cot. His fellow works looked on at his as if he were completely out of his mind. In an effort to play along they went to his rescue and attempted to lift him out of his bed but something was in fact preventing them from lifting his body out of the cot. They continued their attempts for a few more moments until for no reason at all; they were able to spring him from his cot with little to no effort.
The crew was pretty shook up at this point. The young man who experienced this enigma literally ran from the property that evening and never returned. Days later he called from Oahu requesting his check be mailed to him and that he did not plan to return to the Big Island.
I explained how fascinating his story was and how no one was going to just through that story together. He assured me it was no fairytale and that in fact it really happened that way he explained it. As we took our last drag and put out our cigarettes I asked him where all this took place. He calmly explained I would have never heard of this place. It was tucked away deep in a place called North Kohala and that few new of its location. He called it Greenbank. At that point I told him who I was. Our conversation ended abruptly.
Dan & Mary Delasantos on their wedding day at Greenbank on October 17, 1988. They were married on Mary's birthday.