There’s some sad news coming out from the “Hawaii Five-0” community today.
Keo Woolford, a character actor and filmmaker who took on a wide array of different roles over the course of the years, has died at the age of 49. This was confirmed by the local publication the Honolulu Star-Advertiser, who reports that the actor suffered a stroke. In addition to playing the character of James Chang across multiple seasons of the show, he was also known for his work on “The Haumana,” a movie that looked in-depth at hula culture.
Woolford’s last appearance as Chang on the series came in the 2015 episode “Ka ‘alapahi nui,” which featured in part a Tough Mudder competition, among many other things.
Given that this show films in a more isolated part of the word than the standard broadcast fare, you do get a sense of the closeness that existed for many people who worked on the series, whether it be as regulars, on the crew, or as guest stars. You can see a few separate tributes below from people who are associated with the show in some capacity.
Before his death, Woolford was involved in many different causes, including the Dakota Access Pipeline that has dominated the news cycle as of late. We didn’t know him personally, but we saw his work and it’s easy to tell from some of the tributes online that he was a kind, generous man beloved in his local community in Hawaii, who he opted to support in a variety of different ways. He will be dearly missed, and it’s a shame we didn’t get to see even more of him on “Five-0” over the years.
Our thoughts and well-wishes go out to his friends and family through what has to be a very difficult time for them.