Mom and Dad’s wedding in National City

Calvin Moa, 62 years old, is a native San Diegan of Samoan descent. He was born in San Diego County Hospital to his mother, Sauimalae, and his father, Li’amatua in the late nineteen-fifties. Calvin discusses the process in which his parents came to San Diego, what he witnessed growing up, and the culture connect he continued to retain despite being away from his motherland. Like many Samoans, Calvin’s grandfather was active duty in the U.S. Navy, so luckily Calvin had first cousins, aunts and uncles, and other Samoan neighbors around to keep that sense of cultural community. But similar to many first and second generation kids, your environment is expected to influence you.
It is important to note that Calvin is also my dad. And as my mother came to California from American Samoa in her adulthood, I definitely saw cultural differences between the two of them. My mom’s father is a High Talking Chief of the village of Nu’uuli, so she saw Samoan culture at a more hands-on level. I, like my dad, am a native San Diegan. Although I have never lived in Chollas View, my dad and I have a special cultural connect of not just being Samoan, but one from San Diego, California. I hope you, as a listener and reader, can learn something new from my dad’s oral history. Pasifika ties to the city are active today through groups like Taupou Samoa, Sons & Daughters of Guam Club, the local Pacific Islander Covid-19 Response Team, and more. Thanks to my dad and his community, groups like these would not be needed.

My dad (bottom right) with his sisters and parents. Photo was taken at his paternal grandparents house in National City naval complex.