Joined OCC: June 23, 1977
Elected to Winged “O”: September 21, 1996
When Paula Crabb joined the Outrigger Canoe Club in 1977, most of her athletic skill and training was inside a gym. Now she spends most of her free time in the ocean enjoying our blue Hawaiian waters.
Paula received her Winged “O” jacket on September 21, 1996 for her water skills and dedication to OCC athletics.
Paula’s athletic career began in her hometown of Waterford, Connecticut where she competed in gymnastics, track and field, field hockey and was a cheerleader. In college at Southern Connecticut State College, she co-captained the gymnastic team and ran track.
But it wasn’t until she came to Hawaii that she was drawn to the ocean. In 1973, Paula began teaching physical education and coaching gymnastics at Punahou School. Two of her gymnastics students were OCC members and they introduced her to the OCC. She loved it and joined three years later.
Paula started padding in 1978 as a novice. She moved to upper division paddling in 1980 and joined the masters program in 1994. Paula’s first distance paddling experience in 1981 was a winning one with her crew capturing the Na Wahine O Ke Kai title. She won it again in 1985 and 1992. In total, she’s made 21 crossings in the Na Wahine race through 2007.
Paddling has taken her to Australia where she won first place in the Hamilton Cup distance race with her OCC crew. In addition to paddling, Paula has coached novice and youth crews on and off since 1981.
She became interested in one-man canoe racing in 1994 and crossed the Kaiwi Channel for the first time in her one-man canoe in the Molokai race in 1995. She has won many one-man races since then. In 1994 and 1995, she won the masters division of the OCC Tri-Ocean race.
Over the years she has also competed for the Club in volleyball and triathlons.
Paula was selected the first woman Club Captain and served in that position in 1986 and 1987. Paula served on the Canoe Racing Committee from 1980-1995, organizing and registering club paddlers. She also served on the Public Relations and Running committees.
She coaches gymnastics at Punahou and serves as the chairperson of the Physical Education Department. In after school PE she teaches aerobic dancing and windsurfing.