By Jeff King
A Makawao man, on the last leg of a l-o-o-n-g flight, returning from Asia for the holidays, has become the 10,000,000th Hawaiian Airlines passenger of 2014.
For the record, it took Hawaiian from the time the wheels left the ground in 1929 all the way to 1967 to carry that many folks. This year it took just 351 days. Also for the record, December 1967 was the first month in which Hawaiian carried a million passengers. And today, almost home, Harrison Matthews of Makawao was the 10 millionth passenger. Matthews is a 2005 graduate of Seabury. He has been in Asia for the last four years.
Prior to boarding Flight 386 from Honolulu to Kahului Airport (which departed at 10:13 a.m.) president and CEO Mark Dunkerley surprised the mystery traveler, Harrison Matthews of Maui, with a gift of 250,000 HawaiianMiles and awarded all travelers on Flight 386 with 1,000 HawaiianMiles as part of the celebration.
For being there, then, Matthews received 250,000 frequent flier miles which he says he can most definitely use. All passengers on Flight 386 were credited with 1,000 Hawaiian Miles.
Hawaiian Airlines’ first 10 million passengers took nearly 40 years to carry from 1929 to 1967. The former and late president John H. Magoon marked the occasion in December 1967, when Hawaiian Airlines also surpassed the milestone of carrying one million customers annually. Forty-seven years later, Hawaiian Airlines is celebrating almost a 40-fold achievement, carrying just as many passengers in 11 and a half months.