A true legend of the North Shore, Montgomery “Buttons” Kaluhiokalani, sadly passed away in early in November following a long struggle with lung cancer. Here Pat Gudauskas pays tribute to the Hawaiian innovator, and talks of the awe inspired by the North Shore scene during his youth.
Buttons is the man. He influenced all three of us in every way of living and surfing. He had electric energy on the waves and land. Buttons will always be remembered because there will only be one Buttons. Love! Love for surfing, Family and fun.
When we were growing up, our dad worked as a sales representative for Local Motion on the West Coast of California. Every year when the ASR trade show came to San Diego or Long Beach everyone who was involved with the company would meet up. Our mom and dad would cook a huge meal and have everyone from the company come to our house.
It was up until I was about 10 years old I remember every year with all the characters and classics. The late Jack Meyer was doing the artwork for Local Motion at the time, Pat Rawson was shaping the boards, and Tony Moniz was riding on the team with “Buttons”, Brian Pacheco, and Mr. X. It was insane to be able to grow up and feel in the big family with all of these legends.
It was contagious for us. We wanted to be a part of it. We had Local Motion stickers on our boards and we, three white haired groms, would talk about our drops, and say they were like the ones we were watching in the videos. We always talked about going to Hawaii and getting to see the action in person.
Buttons is the man. He influenced all three of us in every way of living and surfing. He has a section in the movie, “A little bit of Hawaiian Style”, where he plays the harmonica and surfs Makaha with his family. He had electric energy on the waves and land. Buttons will always be remembered because there will only be one Buttons. Love! Love for surfing, Family and fun.