Birth Name: Vaitiaré Eugenia Hirshon
Place of Birth: Tahiti, French Polynesia
Date of Birth: August 15, 1964
Ethnicity: Tahitian/Cook Islands [Royal Makea family], one quarter Ashkenazi Jewish, 3/16ths French [including Breton], 1/16th Māori, 1/16th English
Vaitiare Hirshon, also known as Vaitiare Hirshon-Asars, is an American actress. She is known for her role on the series Stargate SG-1.
Vaitiare was born in Tahiti, French Polynesia, and grew up in Southern California, the daughter of Georgina Toomaru (Nelly Georgina Ahuura Toomaru) and Charles Heimata Hirshon. Her parents met during the filming of Mutiny on the Bounty, starring Marlon Brando. She has a daughter with her former partner, Canadian actor Michael Shanks; and a son with her former husband Edgar Asars. She has also been known as Vaitiare Bandera, the surname of her first husband, director Peter Bandera.
Her father was born in Tahiti, of half American German Jewish, one quarter Tahitian, one eighth Māori, and one eighth French Breton, descent. He started movie theatres in the South Pacific. Her mother is of Tahitian/Cook Islands [Royal Makea family], one quarter French, and one eighth Colonial American [English], ancestry, and was a young model and the first airline stewardess in Tahiti. Through her mother, Vaitiare can trace her roots to the Royal House of Makea, located in Rarotonga, Cook Islands, where her grand-cousin, Tinomana Ariki Puaikura, was the “Queen of Queens.” Vaitiare is a 17th generation Makea, with 11 documented King and Queen ancestors in her genealogy. Author James A. Michener wrote Return to Paradise at her grandfather’s house in Tahiti.
Vaitiare’s paternal grandfather was Lewis Hirshon/Hirschhorn (the son of Charles Hirschhorn and Rhonie Hofheimer). Lewis was a stockbroker, who was born in New York, to a family of German Jewish descent. Charles was the son of parents from Prussia/Germany, Ludwig/Louis Hirschhorn and Severine Lippman. Rhonie was the daughter of Nathan Hofheimer, who was from Buttenhausen, Reutlingen, Baden-Württemberg, and of Lena/Helene Rosengart, whose parents were from Buttenhausen.
Vaitiare’s paternal grandmother was Eugénie Raniwaho/Ranivaho Martha/Marthe Amaru Winiki (the son of Thomas Merlin/Marlin Winiki and Teriimateata Marcelle Amarea Metua Amaru). Eugénie was born in Waitara, Taranaki, New Zealand. Her parents married in the Cook Islands. Thomas was born in Midhurst, Taranaki, the son of Henare Winiki/Wi Niki, a Māori, from Taranaki, and likely of Te Āti Awa iwi; and of Caroline Merlin, who had roots in Brittany, France. Vaitiare’s great-grandfather Thomas was known as a “half-caste” Māori boxer in New Zealand. He later settled on Tahiti as a vanilla grower. Vaitiare’s great-grandmother Teriimateata was born on Papetoai, French Polynesia, the daughter of Amaru Papauru Tiamana Metua and Pihaura/Piahera Terii, from Papetō’ai, on the island of Moorea, French Polynesia.
Vaitiare’s maternal grandfather was Edourd/Edouard Teriitahi Toomaru (the son of Emile Tambrun and Vahinetau Toomaru). Edouard was born in Papeete, Tahiti, French Polynesia. Emile was from Eure-et-Loir, France, the son of Louis Tambrun and Clara Lane. Vahinetau was Tahitan, from Pirae, French Polynesia, the daughter of Haape Hape Toomaru and Terire Faaruea.
Vaitiare’s maternal grandmother was Nelly Tematahotu Richmond (the daughter of Gioroehmonoes Roo Georges David Tihoti Richmond and Rangi Terehaapii Teararoa). Nelly was born in Papeete, Tahiti, French Polynesia, and was of mostly Cook Island and Tahitian descent. Gioroehmonoes was born on Kaukura, French Polynesia, the son of George R. Richmond, who was from West Springfield, Massachusetts, U.S., and was of Colonial American (English) descent, with roots in the Plymouth Colony; and of Maoe Tepo Maire, who was from Kaukura.