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Family of slain couple grieving 'a huge loss'

July 16, 2006

MARY VORSINO, Advertiser Staff

Relatives of a Kapahulu couple killed on Tantalus are dealing with their anger and grief day by day, and being helped by an outpouring of support.

"We've suffered a really big loss," said California resident Bob Calverley, who lost a brother-in-law and sister in-law on the night of July 6.

"We're really grateful for all the help, and all the good wishes. I think it's a completely unique thing. It's been a while since I've been to the Islands and I can feel that aloha spirit."

Killed were Jason and Colleen Takamori, both 53, who left behind their only child - 23-year-old Lianne Takamori. She flew to Honolulu with her aunt after the triple homicide on Round Top Drive. The third victim was 50-year-old taxi-cab driver Manh Nguyen.

Adam Mau-Goffredo, 23, has been charged with the murders and a subsequent home invasion, in which he allegedly tied up three people, threatened to shoot them and stole a car.

As the criminal case against Mau-Goffredo progresses, Calverley said the family is considering a civil lawsuit - possibly against the suspect's estate and his Pälolo caregiver, William Roy Carroll Jr.

Mau-Goffredo is accused of stealing a gun from Carroll. He then allegedly used that weapon in the killings.

Carroll did not return a message left on his cell phone.

Rick Fried, the Takamori family's attorney, confirmed yesterday that discussions on a civil lawsuit were ongoing.

Calverley said news about Mau-Goffredo's mental state is distressing, and raises questions about how he was being supervised. "He should have gotten the treatment he needed before this happened," Calverley said.

"We get angry. And we have a lot of questions about the suspect."

Mau-Goffredo had been diagnosed with paranoid schizophrenia in November 2003. For nine months in 2002 and 2003, a private home-care firm provided Mau-Goffredo with home care and helped him stay on his medication.

Carroll, Mau-Goffredo's caregiver at the time of the murders, met Mau-Goffredo as the company employee assigned to care for him.

In August 2003, Carroll left the company and was hired by Mau-Goffredo's mother, Lynnette L.L. Mau, to provide full-time care to her son. In June, a court named Carroll and Mau as co-guardians of the suspect.

A month ago, the Takamoris flew to California to watch Lianne graduate from the University of California Irvine. They stayed at Calverley's house with him and his wife, Cynthia, and the event became an impromptu reunion. Jason Takamori's mother, who is in her 90s, also came.

"We had a really good visit," Calverley said. "They really devoted their lives to Lianne. It's just been such a shock, such a loss."

Those happy memories have replayed in Calverley's head, as the family struggles to come to terms with the violent way the Takamoris died and how quickly life has changed.

"You pick up the paper and you read about this stuff happening to other people and you think it will never happen to you," Calverley said. "Lianne has suffered a huge loss. We're very concerned about her grandmother, Jason's mother. You're not supposed to outlive your kids.

"These are huge, life-changing things."

Calverley said it's been amazing to see how many friends and colleagues have expressed their condolences. The support helps Lianne Takamori make it "through another day," he said.

Services for the Takamoris are scheduled for Friday at Mililani Memorial Park and Mortuary.

Calverley said that his family is also mourning for Nguyen, and seems to feel a special bond with his family - though they've never met. "We feel like we have a lot in common," he said.

On the day she learned of her parents' death, while she was waiting for a flight from California to Hawai'i, Lianne Takamori "started talking about the taxi driver and his family and how terrible it must be for them," Calverley said.

Nguyen, 50, left behind his wife of 19 years, a 17-year-old son and a 13-year-old daughter.

Reach Mary Vorsino at mvorsino@honoluluadvertiser .com or 525-8021.

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Photo caption:

A month ago, Colleen Takamori, left, traveled to the Mainland to attend the graduation of her daughter, Lianne, from the University of California Irvine. On July 6, Colleen and her husband, Jason, were shot to death while sight-seeing on Tantalus. Relatives the couple stayed with say they are struggling to cope with "such a shock, such a loss."