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Betty Walker’s secret


Volunteering is key to living better and longer

Betty Walker, who will celebrate her 90th birthday this October, has volunteered all her life. For Walker, volunteering gives her purpose and satisfaction and is part of staying healthy. For the past 10 years, she has crocheted an estimated 3,500 caps to keep heads, big and little, protected and warm halfway around the world from her apartment at the Pōhai Nani Senior Community in Kāne‘ohe.

Walker began making the caps about 10 years ago for the military serving in Iraq, and then for cancer patients at Castle Medical Center (CMC). In 2014 she began crocheting caps for CMC to take on mission trips to Porgera Hospital in the highlands of Papua New Guinea.

“When you get to be my age, you want to feel like you can still contribute, and that’s how I feel when I do these caps that someone really needs,” Walker says.

Physically active all her life (she has shelves of volleyball trophies and marathon medals to prove it), at the age of 71 Walker ran the 10K run when the H-3 freeway opened in 1997, coming in third in her age group. Her production of caps is most prolific during football season. “She loves to crochet and watch the football games on TV,” says her daughter, Melissa Aiona, with a smile.

Walker, however, doesn’t only help those in need 4,000 miles away—she also does mending projects for those who live in her own community at Pōhai Nani.

Want to make a difference?

Please call our Volunteering office at 263-5252, or just click here to learn more about volunteering at Castle Medical Center.