Home' Greymouth Star : May 2nd 2017 Contents Greymouth Star
4 - Tuesday, May 2, 2017
Jennifer Sinco Kelleher
California couple on
their honeymoon and
two people who drank
a homemade herbal
beverage are among the
rising number of victims in
Hawaii falling ill with a potentially deadly
After the newlyweds’ plight with rat
lungworm disease recently got attention
on-line, the couple and some experts
accused Hawaii of failing to adequately
warn tourists and residents of the danger
they can face. Tourism officials say the
disease is rare and there is no need to
cancel holiday plans.
“ It never occurred to us that our
honeymoon would be two weeks in
paradise to return home with worms in
our brains,” Ben Manilla of San Francisco
said in an e-mail after spending a month
in the hospital, undergoing several
operations and suffering complications.
Hawaii has seen the same number of
infections so far this year that it will often
get annually. Eleven cases have been
confirmed — six on Maui and five on the
The reason for the “concerning increase”
is not clear, said Dr Virginia Pressler,
director of the state health department.
But it could be blamed on a recent Maui
influx of a semi-slug that can carry the
What to know about the disease and
how the state is responding:
Rat Lungworm Disease is a roundworm
parasite found in rodents that causes the
disease affecting the brain and spinal cord.
When rodents expel the lar vae of the
worm, they can be ingested by snails, slugs,
crabs and frogs, then passed to people.
The disease is prevalent in South-east
Asia and tropical Pacific islands and has
been seen in Africa, the Caribbean and the
United States. It is rare, and most people
completely recover without treatment,
according to the US Centres for Disease
Control and Prevention.
Symptoms can range from mild
headaches to temporary paralysis, and
diagnosis requires a spinal tap, said
William L Gosnell, programme director
for the graduate certificate in tropical
medicine at University of Hawaii’s medical
Hawaii sees one to 11 cases annually,
with 11 in 2016, State health officials said.
Two deaths have occurred since officials
began tracking it in 2007.
People get it by eating food
contaminated by the lar vae of the parasite.
They can be found in raw snails or in
produce contaminated by tiny snails or
Two adults on the Big Island got the
disease after consuming contaminated
homemade elixir, health officials said last
week. They left kava, a dietary supplement,
in uncovered buckets overnight and
noticed slugs after drinking it.
You can prevent it by avoiding eating
raw snails or slugs and properly washing
Manilla said had he and his wife, Eliza
Lape, known about the disease, they would
have more thoroughly cleaned fruits and
vegetables. They believe they contracted
it in the remote Hana area of Maui early
“It’s easy in the US to think that we’re
imper vious to things that occur often
in the developing world and apparently
in some of the remote areas of Hawaii,”
Manilla said in an e-mail.
The couple declined an inter view
but told Hawaii News Now that the
symptoms began after they returned to
“My symptoms started growing to
feeling like somebody was taking a hot
knife and just stabbing me in different
parts of my body,” Lape told the Honolulu
Still, the couple can not wait to return to
Hana, Manilla said.
“ We’ll do it a bit differently next time
knowing what we know now about rat
lungworm disease,” he wrote.
The health department in Hawaii
says it works with the Hawaii Tourism
Authority to warn visitors about risks on
the islands. Pressler pointed to “hard to
miss” information about the disease on the
department ’s website .
It is also getting help from State
politicians, who approved $1 million over
the next two years to fight the disease.
The tourism agency has been meeting
with members and contractors who book
travel to explain it and is working on
getting messages to tourists that Hawaii
is safe, said George Szigeti, president and
chief executive. It noted an alert on its
website and a mention in its e-newsletter.
The tourism authority said people should
not overreact and urged visitors to keep
eating at restaurants and enjoying fresh
“The key facts that everyone needs to
remember about rat lungworm disease is
that it is very rare, it is very uncommon for
people to get infected, and the disease is
easily preventable by properly washing and
storing all food, especially produce, before
Tourists’ nasty surprise in Hawaii
PICTURE: Hawaii Department of Health and Centres for Disease Control and Prevention.
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uLetters to the editor
1519 - Artist Leonardo da Vinci dies at Cloux,
1536 - England’s Q ueen Anne Boleyn is sent
to Tower of London, where she eventually is
1957 - Death of controversial US Senator
1967 - British Prime Minister
Harold Wilson’s Labour government
decides to seek membership in
European Common Market.
1972 - Death of J Edgar Hoover,
director of the FBI for 48 years.
1982 - Argentine cruiser General
Belgrano is sunk by a British submarine, killing
368 Argentine sailors in the war over possession
of the Falkland Islands.
1994 - Nelson Mandela and the ANC claim
victory in the first democratic election in South
2011 - Osama bin Laden, the mastermind
behind the September 11 terror attacks, is killed.
uWest Coast yesteryear
uToday in history
Catherine the Great, Empress of Russia
(1729-1796); Baron Manfred von Richthofen,
World War One German fighter ace (1892-
1918); Alan Marshall, Australian author
(1902-1984); Dr Benjamin Spock, US
author-activist (1903-1998); Bing Crosby,
US actor-singer (1904-1977); Peggy Mount,
British actress (1916-2001);
Engelbert Humperdinck, British
singer (1936-); Leslie Gore, US
singer (1946-2015); Donatella
Versace, Italian fashion designer
(1955-); Brian Lara, West Indies
cricketer (1969-); Dwayne Johnson
(aka The Rock), US actor and
former wrestler (1972-); David Beckham,
English footballer (1975-).
“ What experience and history teach is this:
that people and governments have never
learned anything from history. ”
— Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel, German
“Thomas answered him, “My Lord and my
God!” — ( John 20:28).
Five West Coast
mine workers have
been awarded the
British Empire Medal
(BEM) for bravery and acts of gallantry in
rescue work following the explosion in the
Strongman State mine on January 19 which
killed 19 men. The awards were made to the
following: Mr Archibald Auld, of Greymouth;
Mr Wilfred Boardman, of Dunollie; Mr
George William Ewen, of Runanga; Mr
Ronald James Gibb, of Dunollie; Mr Richard
Francis Thomas, of Greymouth.
Messrs Thomas, Boardman and Ewen were
commended for their courage in entering
Green’s No 2 section immediately after the
explosion. Mr Auld, the mine superintendent,
displayed great courage and bravery in entering
the section after the explosion and in leading
the rescue operation.
Mr Gibb, a section deputy who was especially
commended for returning to the mine as soon
as he heard of the disaster, brought to bear his
special knowledge and made a sustained effort
to restore ventilation which led to the eventual
recovery of 15 of the bodies.
First sealing on the Haast Pass road will
begin this year. Plans were disclosed this
morning for sealing at least 10 miles of road
from the Haast bridge northwards. The District
Commissioner of Works and chairman of the
No 12 District Roads Board Mr D B Dallas
said the stretch was usually dusty and allowed
for fairly high speeds.
He pointed out that further north of this
section the road was usually damp and there
was not such a necessity for sealing. He said
£30,000 would be allocated for the job.
uFood for thought
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ebilitating studio battles.
One miraculously still
cat. Mooning contests
between James Caan
and Marlon Brando.
These were the memories
shared, 45 years later, on the making
of The Godfather in a rare reunion of
the film’s cast and director Francis Ford
Coppola at Radio City Music Hall.
With the stage decorated to resemble
the library of Brando’s Don Corleone,
and a portrait of the actor hanging above,
Coppola and cast members Al Pacino,
Robert De Niro, Robert Duvall, James
Caan, Diane Keaton and Talia Shire,
gathered together once again on Saturday.
The night was organised by De Niro as
the closing evening of his Tribeca Film
Festival, which preceded the affair with
a grand double feature of The Godfather,
parts one and two.
That made for a long day — the event
spanned nearly nine hours — but one of
giddy delight for devotees of Coppola’s
While both films are widely viewed as
among the finest ever made, Coppola
and cast spoke again and again about the
films’ humble origins, when Coppola was
a young, untested director, Pacino was an
unknown theatre actor who the studio,
Paramount, was loathe to cast, and few
thought the source material — Mario
Puzo’s best-seller — was the stuff of great
Even Coppola, himself.
“I was disappointed in the book when
I first read it because it ’s very long,”
Coppola, who called Puzo’s book “a bit of
a potboiler”, said.
“Much of the book — about a third —
is about Lucy Mancini’s anatomy,” he said.
Coppola’s battles over casting Pacino
as Michael Corleone have long been
To help convince the wary studio, Pacino
said he did more screen tests — including
after he actually got the part — than he
could remember. Pacino even suggested
Coppola should not fight so hard for him,
telling him, “It ’s okay. We’ll work again.
There are other things to do.”
Coppola was enamored with Pacino.
After meeting him in San Francisco,
he could not shake the image of Pacino
as Corleone. “I just saw his face,” said
Coppola. “Everywhere we went, all the
girls lit up for Al, for some reason.”
Still, Pacino was sceptical. “I thought,
‘Gee, it’s not a really good role,” said the
now 77-year-old actor of the part that
earned him two Oscar nods and made
him a movie star. Sonny is the part I can
play,” he said, referring to the hot-headed
Sonny Corleone, played by Caan.
(De Niro, who ended up playing young
Don Vito Corleone in Part II, also
auditioned for the part of Sonny.)
When the shoot got off to a rocky start,
Pacino lost his already shaky faith. “It ’s
over,” he remembered thinking. “ This is
the worst film ever made!”
Pacino said he was straightened out after
a pep talk from Coppola, who showed
him early footage of his performance and
told the struggling Pacino “to get your
There were many such stories shared
on Saturday. All mar velled at the cat,
roaming nearby, that was thrust into
one scene where it calmly burrowed in
Brando’s lap. After the lengthy wedding
scene, Pacino said, he and Keaton “got
so loaded, we were on the floor.” D uring
the same scene, D uvall said, “ We were all
mooning each other and Brando took it
Brando, of course, was not the only
one missing on Saturday. John Cazale
(Fredo) was spoken of frequently, as was
cinematographer Gordon Willis.
The event was moderated by Taylor
Hackford and live streamed on Facebook.
The conversation sometimes got bogged
down and some on the panel hardly
spoke, as many watching grumbled. De
Niro said little until nearly an hour in.
If it was an imperfect evening, it
only highlighted the almost inhumane
perfection of the movies Coppola et al
produced. Having recently watched the
films for the first time in decades,
Keaton could hardly contain her
“Every choice you made was so
authentically brilliant,” she exclaimed to
Coppola. “It ’s so unusual!”
With time running out, Coppola tried
to take questions from the audience,
asking for the house lights to be raised
and urging audience members to holler
After a few questions, a voice announced
over the speakers that the night was over
and The Godfather got the hook.
Coppola and the group gathered
together on stage to embrace each other
while the crowd, eager for more, took
pictures of the legendary Godfather team,
draped arm in arm.
— New Zealand Herald
Diane Keaton, Robert DeNiro, Robert Duvall, Francis Ford Coppola, James Caan, Al Pacino and Talia Shire pose for a portrait
at The Godfather 45th anniversar y screening.
European Union leaders at a Brexit
summit this week will give a formal
undertaking to embrace the British
province of Northern Ireland in the EU if
a referendum unites the island, diplomats
Irish Prime Minister Enda Kenny
has asked fellow members of the bloc
to acknowledge that Northern Ireland
would, like East Germany in 1990,
automatically enter the EU in the event
of unification with existing member state,
the Irish Republic.
The 1998 Good Friday Agreement to
end violence in the north foresees the
holding of referendums on both sides of
the Irish border on uniting the island if
London and D ublin see public support
for such a change.
European Union leaders, who will
be meeting in Brussels to endorse a
negotiating plan for Britain’s withdrawal,
will give a political endorsement to
what Irish and EU legal experts say is
the position in international law of such
A draft text of the declaration, read:
“The European Council acknowledges
that the Good Friday Agreement
expressly provides for an agreed
mechanism whereby a united Ireland may
be brought about through peaceful and
democratic means; and, in this regard, the
European Council acknowledges that,
in accordance with international law, the
entire territory of such a united Ireland
would thus be part of the European
One EU source said the text, to be
entered into the formal minutes of the
meeting, was a statement of “the obvious”
and, along with Irish officials, he stressed
the summit was not taking a view on
unification or launching any talks on
“ Irish unity is not part of the Brexit
negotiations but given the importance
of the Good Friday Agreement it will
be suitable for that to be acknowledged
by the European Council,” a senior Irish
official in Brussels said.
“This is not about starting a process
but it is important that there be clear
acknowledgment that this is the case.”
EU and Irish officials also stressed that
Britain, whose prime minister Theresa
May will be absent, has itself taken
the same view on EU membership for
Northern Ireland. Brexit minister David
Davis acknowledged last month that, if
it united with the Republic, it would be
entitled to be absorbed into the EU.
Calls for a referendum on leaving the
United Kingdom have picked up since
Northern Ireland, like Scotland, voted
to remain in the EU, while the United
Kingdom’s two other nations, England
and Wales, chose to leave in last year’s
Elections in Northern Ireland in
March denied pro-British unionists a
majority in the province for the first time
since Ireland was partitioned in 1921,
further emboldening Irish nationalists
and their main political representatives
But Kenny has consistently said that
now is not the right time for a vote and
demographics suggest it could take a
generation before Catholics, who tend
to back Irish nationalist parties, become
a majority among Northern Ireland’s
Northern Ireland’s future is part of
broader uncertainty for territories of what
was once the world’s biggest empire.
Britain’s right-wing press fulminated
last month against EU plans to spell out
that Spain, which claims sovereignty
over Gibraltar, should have a veto over
applying any future EU-UK free trade
deal to the tiny British enclave.
Last week, Argentina said it thought it
might gain EU backing after Brexit for
its claim to the Falkland Islands, 35 years
after losing a brief war there to Britain.
Closer to home, Brexit has fuelled
calls to break away not only in Northern
Ireland but also in Scotland.
Calls for Irish unification building
Irish Prime Minister Enda Kenny
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