Aiea High School – Class of 1993
Isaac Brumaghim has three pieces of advice: take more chances, step away from the crowd, and find yourself as an individual. A self-proclaimed “bit of a troublemaker” as a teen, Brumaghim reflects on those years and believes he would have benefited by putting himself out there more.
A 1993 graduate of Aiea High School, he describes himself as distracted in school. Yet, he put forth his best effort in class and always had a good attitude, because he knew that school had a purpose. One thing is for certain, Brumaghim was not the least unfocused when it came to his passion for sports. Perhaps it’s no surprise then that, today, he has worked to become one of Hawaii and the world’s most well-known kayak fishermen.
Out of his love and dedication for the sport, Brumaghim created the globally recognized kayak fishing and diving community, Aquahunters, and the Makahiki Fishing Tournament (now in its 9th season). Devoted to the growth of the sport, sportsmanship, positivity, and creating an ohana of kayak fishermen in Hawaii, the entire world can follow along on their adventures via Aquahunters TV.
Recently, his life’s work has also opened the door on the kind of opportunity that many people dream about: a national television show. The Discovery Channel came knocking and in 2015, Brumaghim became a standout fisherman/cast member on the docu-reality series, Pacific Warriors.
Even with all the media success, kayak fishing goes beyond sport for Isaac. It’s his livelihood. It’s how he puts food on the table for his kids. And it’s a pursuit that has a direct connection to the canoe fishing legacy of his Hawaiian ancestors.
If you could take anyone from history on a fishing trip, who would it be?
I would love to bring Duke Kahanamoku on a kayak fishing trip. I’d love see what he thought about it and gauge his interest in it. He would have so much to share with me, but to watch him and see if it would be something he could fall in love with like I did… He had such a passion for the ocean and the water, it would be nice to share that with him.
What’s the best advice you ever received?
Not worrying about what others think so much. If you’re certain that what you’re doing is a positive thing, and there’s greatness to come out of it, don’t worry so much about what everyone else says. Don’t worry about naysayers. It will only distract you from what you want to attain.
What’s the best part about waking up in the morning?
Having my kids. I have a realization about life, and as it goes on, you just cherish everything more. You see people come and you see people go; there’s life and death. You’re reminded of how fragile life is. I love to get up and live life, sharing what I do with people and seeing the joy it brings them. You only get life once, so you have to recognize that, and go after it.
What does success mean to you?
At the end of the day, success is having family, and support from them, and being solid with yourself. It has nothing to do with money and material things for me. If I know how to feel love and give love, then that’s the most important – having those things in my life is success for me.