UNLOADING – From left, Kent Barkhau, Linda Behnken and Terry Perensovich unload fish at the Seafood Producers Co-op dock from the F/V Woodstock recently. Behnken, executive director of Alaska Longline Fishermen's Association, talked to the Sentinel about an ALFA program to distribute 49,000 pounds of salmon to villages affected by poor subsistence fish returns. (Sentinel Photo by James Poulson)

Joyce Ann Bowen Dies; Was 50-Year Resident

Joyce Ann Bowen, 87, died peacefully in her sleep at home in the early morning of January 23. Her family was by her side.
She was born August 13, 1932, in Mayfield, Kansas, the oldest daughter of Harold and Garnet Downing. She grew up on the farm, attending school in Mayfield and nearby Wellington, and completed her RN qualification at Winfield Nursing School in Kansas.
She married Jerry Bowen, on March 6, 1953, while he was home on leave from the U.S. Navy. They lived in Oklahoma and Kansas until 1967 when she accepted a job at the PHS hospital in Mt. Edgecumbe, Alaska.
The adventure began with three children, a dog and a cat in a car and a camper driving the Alcan highway. In Haines, they waited a week for the next ferry and eventually arrived at their new home on a coastal island, as far from the plains of Kansas as anyone could imagine.
They promptly settled in, traded the pickup and camper for a boat, and never looked back. Joyce worked at the hospital for more than 20 years, ending her career as the head nurse on the obstetrics ward. Many, many babies were held in her arms shortly after their arrival, including her four grandsons. With her love for children, she considered that the perfect job.
After her career at PHS, she accepted a position at the Pioneers Home and worked there for five years before retiring for good. In her spare time, she fished with her husband on the F/V Shirasi and the F/V Sefora, spending almost all her spare time on the ocean.
She loved children and animals and was never without pets in her home. She loved to cook, especially baking, and holidays will never be the same without her.
 Joyce was preceded in death by Jerry, her husband of 45 years, Jerry; her mother and father; sisters Terri Downing and Verla DeJarnett; and her daughter-in-law Barbara Bowen.
She is survived by her daughter and husband, Suzan Bowen and Lonny Gish, of Sitka; her son Mike Bowen and wife Rhonda, (with grandson Wes Bowen (Sitka) and grandson Matt Bowen with great-grandchildren Karley and Tyler) of Port Angeles, Washington; and son Rick Bowen with grandsons Scott and Derek and great- granddaughter Jayden Bowen of Sitka.
She also is survived by two younger sisters, Betty Segraves (Mayfield, Kansas) and Pat DiMauro (Princeton, Texas) and numerous nieces and nephews.
No service is planned, per her wishes.

August 5, 2020

A Note To Our Readers

Reopening: Phase One:


On March 30 the Daily Sitka Sentinel began taking precautions against the coronavirus, which was starting to show up in Alaska.

We closed our building to the public and four key employees started working remotely. Home delivery was suspended to protect our carriers from exposure to the virus.

Four months later, the virus is still with us and the precautions remain in effect.

In appreciation for the willingness of our subscribers to pick up their daily paper at drop-off sites, the Sentinel was free to all readers, and subscriptions were extended without charge.

As of August 1 the Sentinel is once again charging for subscriptions, but the present method of having subscribers pick up their papers at designated sites will continue.

The expiration date of all subscriptions has been extended without charge for an additional four months.

We thank our readers for their support in these uncertain times, and especially those who paid for the paper despite the free offer.

We look forward to the time when we can safely resume home delivery.

To check on the expiration of your subscription or to make a payment please call 747-3219. The subscription email address is This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. . We also will be mailing out reminder cards.

The single copy price is again 75 cents. The news racks do not require coins to open, but we ask that the 75 cents for a non-subscription single copy sale be paid with coins in the slot.

– The Sitka Sentinel Staff


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Alaska COVID-19
At a Glance

(updated 9-18-20)

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 10:30 a.m. Friday.

New cases as of Thursday: 108

Total statewide – 6,658

Total (cumulative) deaths – 45

Active cases in Sitka – 30 (20 resident; 10 non-resident) *

Recovered cases in Sitka – 26 (22 resident; 4 non-resident) *

The state says the cumulative number of cases hospitalized is 257.

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

* These numbers reflect State of Alaska data. Local cases may not immediately appear on DHSS site, or are reported on patient’s town of residence rather than Sitka’s statistics. 




September 2000

Photo caption: First-grader Megan Polasky happily holds a large turnip as she and other first-graders from Baranof Elementary School harvest some of the vegetables they planted last spring as kindergartners behind the Russian Bishop’s House. Park Service Ranger Harvey Brandt, center, watches over the gardening project.

September 1970

The Sentinel adds its congratulations to the following persons listed on the Woman’s Club community calender: Earl E. Smith, Wallis George, Frank Williams, Robert Blankenship, and Frank O. Williams Sr., whose birthdays are today, and Ed and Monte Littlefield, whose anniversary is today.