From Leilehua Mules to the NFL to Breast Cancer Survivor, Paul Dombroski Proves a Champ

Dan Nakasone
Special to The Hawai‘i Herald

I remember it so clearly.

It was a Sunday morning and the NFL Oakland Raiders were playing the New England Patriots. Dad and I were glued to the television set because Paul Dombroski — Dad’s nephew, my cousin — was playing defensive cornerback for the Patriots. His job that day was to defend against Cliff Branch, the Raiders’ three-time First Team All-Pro wide receiver.

Paul’s going up against Branch attracted the attention of sportscaster “Dandy” Don Meredith. He introduced Paul to the millions of viewers by saying: “Paul’s claim to fame is that he is the only NFL player with Okinawan heritage.”

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