GIVING TIME – Debe Brincefield of the Sitka Salvation Army helps distribute food at the Salvation Army on Sawmill Creek Road this afternoon. More than 50 Sitkans were lined up at noon to receive Thanksgiving baskets that included frozen turkeys and fresh vegetables. Food drives were held recently at all Sitka grocery stores to help stock the pantry. (Sentinel Photo by James Poulson)

Herb Didrickson Sr.

Herb Didrickson Sr.

Services have been scheduled for Herb Didrickson Sr., a lifelong Sitkan and a legendary basketball player.

A service will be at noon Tuesday, Oct. 3, at the First Presbyterian Church, with a reception to follow in the church’s Latta Hall.

A celebration of his life will be held at Harrigan Centennial Hall from noon to 6 p.m. on Thursday, Oct. 19.

Herb died Sept. 25 in Sitka at the age of 91.

He was born June 11, 1926, in Sitka; his Tlingit name was Jin’kooteen. He attended the Front Street School, in  the 200 block of Katlian Street, and Sheldon Jackson High School, graduating in 1946.

He and classmate Pollyanna Lott were married Sept. 4, 1948, in the Sitka Presbyterian Church.

A superb athlete, he was recognized for his basketball playing on the local, state, national and even international levels, but decided to stay in Sitka. He was a member of the Gold Medal Hall of  Fame, and also was a referee, a softball coach, and an avid spectator.

He was a member of Alaska Native Brotherhood Camp 1, Sealaska and Shee Atika corporations. He was a Sitka Tribe of Alaska council member, and was active in the Presbyterian Church.

Over the years he was a fisherman, an upholsterer, a teacher at Mt. Edgecumbe High School, and an Alaska Airlines employee.

He was a devoted husband, father, grandpa and great-grandpa.

“Our dad was giving and loving, first and foremost, to his family. ...  His values and beliefs were his way of life,” his children wrote.

“He also loved to be his own tour guide – he’d take people on his Sitka tours!”

Herb was preceded in death by his parents, Simon and Jennie Didrickson, his birth mother Katherine White and his stepmother Susie.

He is survived by his wife of 69 years, Pollyanna Didrickson, of Sitka; his daughter Vickie Didrickson, her daughters, Polly Bingham and Christina Harris, all of Anchorage, and son Freddie Hamilton of Craig; his son David Didrickson of Kake and children, Richard, of Kake, David of Pennsylvania, Daisy of Anchorage, and Sandra Brendan and Elijah, both of Sitka; and son Herb Didrickson Jr. and his son, Aaron, both of Sitka.

Pallbearers will be Freddie Hamilton, Aaron K. Didrickson, C.J. Taccod, Mason Martin Eubanks, Asa Demmert,  Ben Exe, Isaiah Rexford, Al Samuelson and Jamal Alstrom.

Honorary pallbearers are Willis Osbakken, Gil Truitt, Emma Borbridge, Sam Martin, Cecilia Borbridge, Gus Adams, David Leask, Rog Levine, Ken Creamer, Sam Kitka, Corrine Brown, Maggie Verney, Fred Hope, Bill McNaly, Stan Filler, Dan Evans, Mervin Haven, Charlie Daniels, Mary Jones, Adeline Burton, Herman Davis, Don Natkong and Ruth Williams

A bank account has been set up at First National Bank Alaska under Friends of Jin’kooteen, account number 31230998.

 

Memorial donations also may be sent to Ken Creamer, 101 Sunset, Sitka, AK 99835.

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