Hawaii News

‘Last Hawaiian Princess,’ Abigail Kawānanakoa, dies Sunday at 96

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Princess Abigail Kinohiki Kekaulike Kawānanakoa. Courtesy photo

Gov. Josh Green has ordered state flags at half-staff to honor the late Abigail Kawānanakoa, who passed on Dec. 11, 2022. The Native Hawaiian royal descendant, known by many as the last Hawaiian princess, was 96 years old.

Kawānanakoa had no official title but her lineage included the royal family that once ruled the islands and an Irish businessman who became one of Hawaiʻi’s largest landowners.

On Monday morning, outside ʻIolani Palace on O’ahu, her death was announced.


“Abigail bore the weight of her position with dignity and humility, enriched the lives of everyone she touched, and like so many Aliʻi who came before her, she has left a legacy dedicated to her people in perpetuity,” Gov. Green said in a statement. “Hawaiʻi mourns this great loss, and our aloha and heartfelt condolences go out to her entire ʻohana and all who had the privilege of knowing Princess Abigail Kawānanakoa.”

Kawānanakoa was a passionate advocate for Native Hawaiian causes, believing that her wealth was to be used to help preserve the Native Hawaiian culture and people.

A news releasesaid she died peacefully in her Honolulu home with her wife, Veronica Gail Kawānanakoa, at her side. Her wife said in a statement: “Abigail will be remembered for her love of Hawai‘i and its people and I will miss her with all of my heart.”


Co-chairs of the Legislative Native Hawaiian Caucus Sen. Jarret Keohokalole and Rep. Daniel Holt said in a joint statement: “As a longtime benefactor for the Friends of ʻIolani Palace and many other Native Hawaiian causes, Princess Abigail’s generosity and contributions have greatly benefited our lāhui. Our hearts and prayers are with her ʻohana and loved ones during this time.”

The flags at the Hawaiʻi State Capitol, all state offices and agencies, and the Hawaii National Guard will remain at half-staff until sunset on Dec. 18.

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