GROWING CONCERNS – Sitkans Andrea Fraga and Kaleb Aldred of Middle Island Gardens introduce themselves to an audience of around 100 this afternoon during the Southeast Alaska Farmers Summit in Sweetland Hall on the SJ campus. The three-day conference, organized by Southeast Alaska Watershed Coalition, Sustainable Southeast Partnership, runs through Sunday at several Sitka venues. Some of Saturday's topics include farming in Fairbanks, pest control and cultivating gourmet mushrooms. Vendor tables will be set up on Saturday and Sunday at Harrigan Centennial Hall. (Sentinel Photo by James Poulson)

Pauline Seesz, Former Sitkan, Dies in Colorado


Pauline Seesz, of Alamosa, Colo., went home to be with the Lord on August 15, 2018, following a sudden illness. The former Sitka resident was 73.
She was born Nov. 8, 1944, in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, the daughter of Robert and Dorothy (Wendt) Reynolds. She attended schools in Belview and Morgan, Minnesota, where she graduated in 1962. She met and married Don Seesz from Fairfax, Minnesota, and they lived in Dawson, Minnesota, before moving to Sitka in 1968, when Don accepted a teaching job at Blatchley Middle School.


Pauline Seesz


In Sitka, Pauline worked as a medical records transcriptionist at both local hospitals.  She was a natural caregiver and enjoyed babysitting for several young children at her home.  One in her care, Shanna Joy Hammons, remained a friend for life.
Reflecting her rural Minnesota upbringing Pauline kept up her hobbies of knitting, crocheting, cross stitching, gardening, and canning.  She was also an excellent homemaker and cook and many friends still have her tasty recipes in their collections. 
In 1985, Pauline traveled with her family to Melbourne, Australia, when Don was offered an opportunity to trade classrooms for a year.   In Australia, Pauline loved to visit the markets and buy fresh fruits and vegetables. She also loved to sip tea and eat crumpets at the tea houses. While there, she also visited China, Tasmania, and New Zealand.
Following a divorce in 1986, Pauline returned to southern Minnesota and continued to work in the medical field.  She applied for a medical records job in Santa Fe, New Mexico, in 1989 and began a new life in a place where she truly felt at home.
Her daughter Maria soon moved to New Mexico, and the two of them remained close and lived together when Pauline changed jobs and moved near Las Vegas, New Mexico.
She continued working in medical records at Alta Vista Hospital in Las Vegas and started working from home. She continued to enjoy her hobbies and still listened to the music of Willie Nelson along with a newly adopted type of Northern New Mexico music her family referred to in a joking way as “pressure cooker” music. 
In 2008, Pauline, Maria and granddaughter Willa moved to Alamosa, Colorado, in the San Luis Valley. Pauline worked several more years in medical records from home.  While she still enjoyed the music of Willie Nelson, Christian music and her faith became important parts of her life. She was also involved with a prayer shawl group, Pink Sisters, in Alamosa, and enjoyed knitting and crocheting items for those in need.
She was a cancer survivor and made an effort to support those going through some of the struggles she once battled.
She loved being a mom and adored her granddaughter Willa.  Friends and family delighted in Pauline’s laughter, which came easily and often.  Sitting at her table, filling up with her tasty dishes and listening to her tell a story is a memory friends will hold close to their hearts.
Family will miss being able to call Pauline to get an answer to a question about life’s events.  She was known to have a marvelous memory.  She could share names, dates and details of events long after everyone else could, and she was “spot on” correct most of the time! 
She was preceded in death by her parents and three sons:  Jonathan Dale, August 8, 1966, Lee Allen, August 10, 1968, and John Paul, April 15, 1969. (John Paul is buried in Sitka.)
Pauline is survived by her daughter Maria Seesz (Tim Sanchez), granddaughter Willa Seesz-Sanchez, all of Alamosa, Colorado; sister, Linda (Jac) Kleinschmidt of Morgan, Minnesota;  brothers Robert Reynolds Jr., Redwood Falls, Minnesota, Allan (Bev) Reynolds of Mankato, Minnesota; ex-husband and wife/friend, Don and Jane Seesz, Sitka; and numerous nieces and nephews.
She maintained friendships with many people throughout the country – in Alaska, New Mexico, Colorado and Minnesota to name a few.
A celebration of her life will be held at the Alamosa Christian Reformed Church (ACRC) in Waverly 11 a.m. Saturday, Sept. 22.  Lunch will be provided by Pauline’s Amish friends after the service, and friends and family will have a dinner and bonfire with s’mores later in the day at the ACRC community center. Services will be pending in both Sitka and Morgan, Minnesota.

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