Isle fam­ily ready to tackle ‘Feud’

Honolulu Star-Advertiser - - TODAY - By Mike Gor­don mgor­don@starad­ver­

The Schae­fers are ready for a se­ri­ous feud. They’ve even been prac­tic­ing.

Ron, Kathy, Eric, Re­nee and Am­ber — a close-knit Hawaii Kai fam­ily — are go­ing to test their abil­ity to think quickly when they com­pete against an­other fam­ily this week on the syn­di­cated TV game show “Fam­ily Feud.”

They left Mon­day for At­lanta, where the show is taped, and will com­pete Wed­nes­day. The Schae­fers do not know yet when their episode will air, but it will be a first for Hawaii. “Fam­ily Feud” pro­duc­ers have told the fam­ily they’re the first from the is­lands to make the show, said Ron Schae­fer, a 58-year-old physi­cian at Straub Clinic & Hospi­tal and Ka­pi­olani Med­i­cal Cen­ter for Women & Chil­dren.

“I thought it would be a fun thing to do, some­thing we could do as a fam­ily that would bring us closer to­gether,” he said, as if close­ness was an alien con­cept for this fam­ily.

They live un­der the same roof — mom, dad and their three grown chil­dren. They take fam­ily va­ca­tions. They hang out to­gether.

“We are a fun-lov­ing, close fam­ily that likes to have a good time,” Schae­fer said. “We are al­ways jok­ing around and laugh­ing a lot to­gether. We’re a nice fam­ily. We all get along.”

Kathy Schae­fer, 55, is also a doc­tor, with a pain man­age­ment prac­tice in Kailua. Son Eric, aka The Prince, is a 27-year-old rap­per who also runs a tourism-re­lated business. Daugh­ter Re­nee, 24, is an art di­rec­tor for San Lorenzo Biki­nis, and youngest child Am­ber, 21, is study­ing bi­ol­ogy with a premed em­pha­sis at Hawaii Pa­cific Univer­sity.

Re­nee Schae­fer is the big “Fam­ily Feud” fan, hav­ing watched it reg­u­larly since she was a teenager. Com­pet­ing was her idea, a bucket-list ex­pe­ri­ence.

“I just loved how it was one of those game shows where it was reg­u­lar peo­ple,” she said. “You didn’t need spe­cial trivia knowl­edge.”

The an­swers to ques­tions posed on the show are drawn from the re­sponses from a 100-mem­ber sur­vey panel. “Fam­ily Feud” con­tes­tants have to guess the most pop­u­lar an­swers to each ques­tion. The grand prize for each show is $20,000, with fam­i­lies lim­ited to five ap­pear­ances on the show, which is hosted by Steve Har­vey and airs in Hawaii on KHON at 10 and 10:30 a.m. week­days and 5 and 5:30 p.m. Satur­days.

“You just need to be able to think quickly and come up with an­swers,” Re­nee said. “I fig­ured that was some­thing I was al­ways good at and my dad is, too. I fig­ure me and him could win some fast money.”

The Schae­fers sub­mit­ted an au­di­tion video that in­tro­duced them as a fam­ily — ev­ery­one wedged to­gether on a couch with a fam­ily pet — and high­lighted their in­di­vid­ual in­ter­ests, from Kathy’s aer­o­bics class to Eric’s rap­ping to Ron’s abil­ity to teach tricks to the fam­ily dogs.

To pre­pare, the Schae­fers watched old episodes of “Fam­ily Feud” on YouTube.

“We’re all pretty in­tel­li­gent,” the fam­ily pa­tri­arch said. “I think we have a good chance. On the other hand, if we lose, that is OK, too. It isn’t about the money. It’s about the op­por­tu­nity to have been on a na­tional TV game show and to have spent time with the fam­ily.”

See their au­di­tion video at


The Schae­fer fam­ily, from left: par­ents Kathy and Ron, son Eric, 27, and daugh­ters Am­ber, 21, and Re­nee, 24, hold­ing the fam­ily dog, Stella. They will be com­pet­ing on the TV game show “Fam­ily Feud.”

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