In 1928 poet Don Blanding, sometimes referred to as the poet laureate of Hawaii, wrote an article in the Honolulu newspaper suggesting that a day be set aside to create leis, to keep this important tradition alive in the hearts of all Hawaiians. It was made an official territory holiday just a year later. It remains today an important day of celebration with parades and people wearing their hand crafted leis.
When Don Blanding died. in 1957, his ashes were scattered from lei adorned canoes off the beach in Waikiki a fitting farewell to a man who carried Hawaii in his heart.