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JY Lunch Wagon says goodbye to UH Mānoa

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Students, faculty and other loyal customers braved the winds and rain to have their last plate lunch at JY Lunch Wagon on Thursday.

For more than five years, JY Lunch Wagon has served the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa and the Mānoa community with their signature Korean plate lunches.

“There’s no other place like this nearby the college,” Aaron Levine, partnership and placement coordinator for the Institute for Teacher Education, said. “It’s been a staple for many years, for many lunches.”

JY Lunch Wagon was located past Banán on Metcalf St.

It was owned by a duo that consisted of a wife and her husband, who wished to be known as Auntie and Uncle.

“(Auntie) is really sweet, even uncle too,” former UH student Jake Sakamoto said. “They always hook it up with their good food.”

As part of their service they would give out free candies, and every new year mochi would be served.

In addition, the duo remembered their customers, new and old, and their favorite choices.

“I have my favorite and I don’t have to place my order,” Lori Fulton, a professor of Elementary Education in College of Education, said.

Auntie and Uncle’s family oriented nature made the lunch wagon a warm and welcoming place.

“They become part of our extended office out here,” Waynele Yu, secretary at the College of Education and design technology graduate student, said. “They’re both so good to us and I’m going to really miss them.

For their special last day, many customers had called to place their last order and others fought the rainy weather to say their final farewell to Auntie and Uncle.

“I had a regular customer who was walking towards us, just crying and sobbing,” Auntie said.

Despite their last day, they still made time to hug their customers good-bye. Students, faculty and customers all wished them well and even gifted them with presents as a ‘thank you’ for their hard work.

The line to have their last plate lunch from the wagon stretched to a neighboring house.

“I just want to say thank you for being with us,” Auntie said. “Thank you so much for everything.”