The Garden Island
Notice #: 0001311128-01
Funeral Notices


76, of Kapolei, Hawaii, passed away in his home on Dec. 14, 2020, after a long struggle with cancer. Born in Florence, Ala., on July 25, 1944. He is survived by his wife of 51 years, Barbara Johnson Erwin, of Tuscumbia, Ala., their children Christi Donnan, (Christopher), of Pasadena, Calif., and Andrew Erwin (Katie), of Madison, Ala., three grandchildren William Erwin (10), Hanna Donnan (6), Elleanor Donnan (3) and step grandchild Addie Fuller (13), his younger sister Andrea Coats (Tommy), of Florence and many nieces and nephews including Leilani Nowak, of Ewa Beach, Hawaii. He is preceded in death by his parents, Woodrow and Onetta Erwin and older sister, Faye Jones, also of Florence.

Private services were held at Nuuanu Memorial Park and Mortuary. He was laid to rest at Hawaii State Veterans Cemetery.

Erwin graduated from University of North Alabama with a B.A. and the University of Alabama with a M.A. both in Journalism. He was a pioneer as a multi-media journalist working for TV and radio stations in North Alabama and also taught journalism and editing classes at his alma mater. Erwin was active in the U.S. Army and National Guard and served over 30 years before retiring as a Lt. Col. He participated in several active duty assignments including time in Panama, Desert Shield and Desert Storm in Kuwait and Operation Joint Endeavor with the U.S. Army Europe in Heidelberg, Germany.

In 1998, he and his wife relocated to Kapolei, Hawaii (O’ahu) where he was the civilian Public Affairs Officer for Naval Air Station Barber’s Point. He continued to serve in several different Department of Defense civilian Public Affairs support for the Asia-Pacific Center for Security Studies and posts at U.S. Army Fort Shafter where he retired as the Chief of Public Affairs.

Erwin was a loving husband, father, grandfather, brother, uncle and friend to many and spent much of his free time capturing and editing photos and video of his family and friends. He was also known as a teacher and mentor for many in the area of communications.

The family wishes to give special thanks to Dr. Jonathan Kim and Dr. Jared Acoba, as well as Rev. Chuck Lynde. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the American Cancer Society.

Arrangements Provided By: Nuuanu Memorial Park & Mortuary LLC