FAREWELLS – TOP: Staff and faculty of Keet Gooshi Heen Elementary School wave to students and families as they drive by in the school parking lot this morning during a "reverse parade." Today was the final day of school in the district. ABOVE: Also today, Blatchley Middle School held a Rites of Passage ceremony in the parking lot. Principal Ben White hands out certificates to eighth-graders who will be attending high school in the fall. (Sentinel Photo by James Poulson)

Pollyanna Dorothy Marion Didrickson

Pollyanna Dorothy Marion Didrickson

A memorial service for Pollyanna Dorothy Marion Didrickson will be held 1 p.m. January 6, 2018, at the First Presbyterian Church.
    A celebration of her life will follow immediately afterward in Latta Hall. It will be a potluck, and those attending are invited to take a favorite dish.
    Polly died Dec. 19 after a long battle with Alzheimer’s. She was 91.
    She was born March 3, 1926, in Akiak, the daughter of Katie (White) and Norman Frank Lott. When she was 7 she went to an orphanage, the Moravian mission school in Holy Cross, Alaska.
    In 1941, she came to Sitka to attend Sheldon Jackson High School, where she met and married Herb Didrickson. They celebrated their 69th wedding anniversary on Sept. 4.
    Along with raising her brother Norman Lott’s children Katie and Norman for a time after his death, Polly raised her own children, Vicki, David and Herb Jr., and held several jobs. Her last secretarial job was for the Alaska Department of Fish and Game law enforcement branch.
    Polly was a “prayer warrior,” and even while she was passing away, she still prayed for others.    
    Polly was preceded in death by her husband, Sept. 25, 2017, and her three brothers, George, Ted and Norman Lott.
    She is survived by her children, Vicki Hamilton and David Didrickson, both of Anchorage, and Herb Didrickson Jr. of Sitka; eight grandchildren; and 19 great-grandchildren.
    Those wishing to make memorial contributions can send them to Herb Didrickson Jr., P.O. Box 154, Sitka.



Alaska COVID-19
At a Glance

(updated 5-22-20)

By Sentinel Staff

The state Department of Health and Social Services has posted the following update on the number of confirmed COVID-19 cases in Alaska as of 11:00 a.m. Friday.

New cases as of Thursday: 2

Total statewide – 404

The state says the cumulative number of cases hospitalized is 44, and the cumulative number of deaths is 10.

To visit the Alaska DHSS Corona Response dashboard website click here.



Welcome to the Sitka Sentinel's web page. In order to make the Sentinel's news more easily available during the COVID-19 pandemic, we have taken down the paywall to access articles on this page. Just click on an article headline to read the story. 

March 23, 2020



For the duration of the COVID-19 disaster emergency declared by federal, state and local authorities, the Sentinel is taking additional measures to reduce virus exposure to its employees and contractors as well as to the public, while continuing to publish a daily news report for Sitka.

To the extent possible, Sentinel news and sales staff will be working from home. For the protection of our carriers, home delivery of the newspaper will be stopped effective Tuesday, March 24.

The Sentinel will continue to publish on its website sitkasentinel.com. Access to the website will be free to all users. The Sentinel will also produce a print edition Monday through Friday. It will be available to all readers without charge, at locations throughout town.

Initially, these locations are those where the Sentinel's newspaper vending machines are already in place. The coin mechanisms will be disabled or the doors removed to permit easy access. The Sentinel will work with the stores where the paper is usually sold, to designate a place inside or outside the store where the free edition can be made available.  

Home delivery subscriptions are on hold, and after the end of the disaster emergency, subscriptions will be extended at no charge for the number of days that there was no home delivery.

The Sentinel will make its print edition available to the public as early in the day as possible. with all personnel taking precautions to prevent spread of the virus.

The Sentinel is calling upon its customers to observe the COVID-19 emergency precautions already in place, particularly in maintaining a six-foot social distance from others at newspaper distribution sites.

Following is the statement issued by the Sentinel on March 16, stating the Sentinel's emergency procedures, which remain in effect.

The Sentinel office at 112 Barracks Street is closed to the public. We encourage people to use the phone, email or the U.S. Postal Service as much as possible.There is a slot in the front door of the office for ads, news items and payment checks. Emails may be sent to  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. and the phone number is (907) 747-3219.                                                                          

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