Michael Rice: A Genuine Journey of Passion and Connection
In the vibrant setting of Hawaii, Michael Rice, a man of many talents and resilience, has etched his unique story through his involvement with Best Buddies in Hawai’i. He has embraced the aloha spirit as much as Hawaii has embraced him.
Michael, an actor with a fervor for his craft, found his footing in the film industry through “Bury My Heart In Tonawanda,” a film written by autistic screenwriter Adrian Esposito. Breaking barriers, Michael’s journey reflects not just his artistic prowess but also a commitment to inclusivity within the cinematic landscape.
Michael’s dedication extends beyond the silver screen; he aspires to become a Best Buddies Global Ambassador, inspired by his friend Caley, who held the same prestigious title in California. In Best Buddies events, such as outings at Aloun Farm and the Thanksgiving party, Michael discovered a sense of camaraderie, playing bingo, joking around, and relishing the company of newfound friends.
At Buzz’s Original Steak House, where he works as a dishwasher, Michael discovered more than just a job – he found a second family. Mani Schneider, General Manager of Buzz’s, acknowledges Michael as a team player, always eager to lend a helping hand to anyone in need. “They love me, and they have my back,” Michael proudly states, emphasizing the supportive environment he’s found in his workplace.
Michael also got to meet former President Barack Obama at Buzz’s and take a photo with him.
Scott McCall, Michael’s personal trainer, attests to his exceptional qualities, noting his infectious smile and unwavering commitment to every aspect of life. “He is an outstanding individual with an awesome personality,” Scott says. “Mike always has an upbeat attitude and gives his total focus to our workouts. It seems he brings these attributes to all things that he puts effort into.”
Michael’s family extends beyond the workplace, with brothers Alex and Jack, who stand as pillars of support in his life. “They have my back,” he gratefully remarks, underlining the significance of familial bonds.
Harry Koizumi, Michael’s ukulele teacher, adds another dimension to his story, stating that Michael is a joy to teach and is making commendable progress. “He’s getting pretty good,” Koizumi notes, highlighting Michael’s dedication to learning and growing in all aspects of life.
In addition to his varied pursuits, Michael participated in the Honolulu Marathon, showcasing his resilience and determination in athletic endeavors. He also takes sign language classes.
As he continues to pursue his acting dreams and advocate for autism and Down Syndrome awareness, Michael stands as a testament to the power of genuine connections, shared passions, and an indomitable spirit.