Saturday, March 31, 2012

SAMOAN VILLAGE BESTOWS MATAI TITLE ON NFL PLAYER Reagan Maui‘a honored to receive chiefly Tuioti title

By Etevise Fidow
APIA, Samoa (Samoa Observer, Jan. 10, 2012) - A Samoan who has played American football for top NFL teams like the Miami Dolphins and the Arizona Cardinals has been bestowed the ultimate honour. Reagan Maui’a was bestowed the Tuioti title from Falelima, Savai’i, where his mother comes from.

Tuioti Reagan is the son of TagiifoSefo Maui’a, of Lepea and Falelima and Pili Maui’a of Faleniu, American Samoa. This is Tuioti Reagan’s first time in Samoa. He told the Samoa Observer he has been hugely impressed by the amount of respect accorded to him since he was given the title.

Mr Tuioti said he didn’t expect to become a matai. "But I believe it is a blessing from God," he says.

Tuioti says he wants to show his family and village that he is fully committed to his title and whatever responsibility it brings.

"I want to serve my family, village as well as my church with pride," he says. "Whatever my family, my village or my church asks me for, I’ll just have to do it. I’m keen to help them in any way I can."

The football star thanked his family for the honour. "I promise myself I’m going to make use of it and assist my family the best I can."

TuiotiMaui’a was born on July 6 1984 in American Samoa.

He was drafted by the Miami Dolphins in the sixth round of the 2007 NFL Draft and had played college football at Hawaii. Maui’a has also played for the Cincinnati Bengals and Arizona Cardinals. He attended Tokay High School in Lodi, California, and was a four-year letterman in football and track and field athletics.

In football, he was an All-League and an All-Area selection.

In track and field athletics, he broke the school record in the shot put with a throw of 52 ft 8 in (16.05 m). Maui’a graduated from Tokay High School in 2002.

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