Polynesian Football Hall of Fame inducts Class of 2015 

The Polynesian Football Hall of Fame, which has partnered with the Polynesian Cultural Center as the site of a new permanent display, recently announced its 2015 inductees.

The 2015 PFHF inductees are:

Luther John Elliss (Samoan), DT for the University of Utah who played nine seasons for the Detroit Lions (including two Pro Bowls) and one for the Denver Broncos.

Manase Jesse Sapolu (Samoan), played O-line for the University of Hawaii, then 15 seasons for the San Francisco 49ers. He is one of 23 NFL players with four or more Super Bowl rings.

Raymond Frederick Schoenke (Hawaiian), O-line for Southern Methodist University, played two seasons with the Dallas Cowboys (1963-64) followed by 12 seasons with the Washington Redskins.

Mosiula “Mosi” Faasuka Tatupu (Samoan), played RB/kick returner at USC, then 14 seasons (1978-1990) with the New England Patriots and one with the Los Angeles/St. (Louis Rams. Deceased: February 23, 2010)

Mark Pulemau Tuinei (Samoan), O-line for UCLA and Hawaii, then 15 seasons with the Dallas Cowboys (1983-97; tied for the most seasons played with that team). (Deceased: May 6, 1999)

• Contributor Russell Ross Francis (TE for the University of Oregon), played for the New England Patriots (1975-80 and 1987-88) and the San Francisco 49ers (1982-87): Honored for bringing positive exposure to football in Hawaii and Polynesia.

Other players considered for the Class of 2015 included George Achica, Samoan; Junior Ah You, Samoan; Bob Apisa, Samoan; Charlie Teetai Ane Jr., Samoan; Herman “Buddy” Clark, Hawaiian; Riki Ellison, Maori; Rockne Freitas (Hawaiian); Ma’ake Kemoeatu, Tongan; Todd Lyght, Marshallese; Chris Nae’ole, Hawaiian; Al Noga, Samoan; Dan Saleaumua, Samoan; Vai Sikahema, Tongan;and Ma’a Tanuvasa, Samoan.

Other coaches and/or contributors considered included Thomas Ka’ulukukui, Hawaiian; Al Lolotai, Samoan; John Manumaleuna, Samoan; and Charlie Wedemeyer, Hawaiian.

Meanwhile, the PFHF display is set to open at the Polynesian Cultural Center on January 24, 2015, in conjunction with their official induction of the 2015 class in Hawaii. The display will be located on the Kahuku side of what is now the main entrance building at the PCC. Once our new Hukilau Marketplace opens, guests will come to our former main entrance for orientation and to see the new Hall of Fame display.

Eric Workman, PCC Executive Vice President of Sales and Marketing, explained that the Center is “working with several different partners and suppliers to build the Hall of Fame. There’s been quite a bit of interest in support of the Hall of Fame: It’s a labor of love and respect for the players and their families.”

“Norm Harris, the architect, has planned some wonderful cultural designs and incorporated island materials,” Workman added. “It will be very distinctive.”

The Polynesian Football Hall of Fame originally announced its first class of inductees and partnership with the PCC on January 24, 2014. For more information on all the inductees and the PFHF, visit the Polynesian Football Hall of Fame.

Story by Mike Foley


Mike Foley, who has worked off-and-on

at the Polynesian Cultural Center since

1968,  has been a full-time freelance

writer and digital media specialist since

2002, and had a long career in marketing

communications and PR before that. He

learned to speak fluent Samoan as a

Mormon missionary before moving to Laie

in 1967 — still does, and he has traveled

extensively over the years throughout

Polynesia and other Pacific islands. Foley

is mostly retired now, but continues to

contribute to various PCC and other media.