Comfortably astride his horse, Earl Thacker of Honolulu resembles an unheroic equestrian monument to good living in the 50th state. A seagoing Californian, Thacker jumped ship at Honolulu 35 years ago and invested in a then-unpromising swamp called Waikiki. The desertion made him a millionaire, and his most profitable investments since have been in the idle-hour pleasures of horses, hunting, boats and hospitality. "There's no better life to be had anywhere," says he happily.
Years ago Thacker formed a polo team, kept the sport going through its most difficult years. When he was Commodore of the Pearl Harbor Yacht Club he taught hundreds of children to sail. But it is showing off the islands' sporting possibilities to visitors that Thacker enjoys most. From his Molokai ranch a never-ending stream of guests hunts Japanese Nara deer, wild boar and mountain sheep. "When it comes to chasing deer afoot," testifies his friend, Writer Robert Ruark, "he's frisky as a colt."