READY TO ASSIST – Baranof Island Housing Authority staff members are pictured in the lobby of the Katlian Street office this morning. BIHA is helping administer a rent and utility assistance program with Alaska Housing Finance Corp. Sitkans with a household income of less than $71,280 may be eligible for up to a year of rent or utility assistance. The deadline to apply is March 5. From left are Cliff Richter, Denise Salter, Joy Klushkan, Charlene Hoffay, Melanie Barker and Mary Ann Nells. (Sentinel Photo by James Poulson)

Sitkan Marie C. McGraw Dies in Oregon at Age 93

Marie Cecilia McGraw

With great sadness, the family of Marie Cecilia McGraw has announced her passing of respiratory failure on January 13, 2021 in Corvallis, Oregon, at the age of 93.  She was the matriarch of the McGraw family.

Marie was born in Sitka, Alaska, on December 15, 1927, to Nicholas and Cecilia (Peterson) Trierschield.

She lived in Sitka until she was 89. While visiting her daughter, she lost the ability to walk, and remained in Lebanon, Oregon, near Michele until her death. Even though she lived in Oregon for the last four years, she still insisted she was a resident of Alaska, because Sitka was her home.

Marie graduated from Sitka High School (the old Etolin Street School) in 1945, one of eight in her graduating class. She married Dormand McGraw on February 9, 1946, in Sitka where they raised their five sons and one daughter.

Together, Marie and Dorm owned and operated various businesses over the years, including: Reliable Transfer, Sitka Builders Supply and McGraw’s Hardware.  She was also the bookkeeper for her brother and his son, Charles Trierschield Jr., who owned the Sitka Bazaar.  Marie actually worked at the original Sitka Bazaar, owned by her maternal grandmother, Marie Peterson, when she was young.

Marie enjoyed spending time with her family and friends; weekends at the “Silver Bay Cabin”; and rides from one end of town to the other.

She loved Christmas, usually left her decorations up for two months, and wore the same Christmas sweater for many years. Whenever it was someone’s birthday, family or friends, Marie would play her “birthday bear” for the recipient.  (That bear got a good workout!)

Marie was preceded in death by her parents; her husband of 61 years; sons Robert McGraw and Michael McGraw Sr.; grandsons Timothy McGraw and Dormand McGraw III; and brother, Charles Trierschield Sr.

Marie is survived by her daughter-in-law, Toni McGraw, of Sitka; sons Dormand McGraw Jr. (Kathy) of Pahrump, Nevada, and Charles McGraw Sr. (Nancy) and Jonathan McGraw Sr. (Cindy) of Sitka; and her daughter, Michele Burd (Tim) of Lebanon, Oregon.

She has one surviving sister, Nicolina Sherlock, of Nevada.  Many friends were considered and treated like family.

Marie is also survived by 12 grandchildren: Nicholas (Jenn), Jenna, Sheila, Michael (Tina), Shiloh Sparks (Brad), Charles Jr., Chad (Lisa), Christopher (Jessica), Jonathan Jr., Mitchell, Joshua Sr., and Amanda Burd.  She is survived by 20 great-grandchildren:  Stephen, Shawn, Monique, Dakota Sparks, Carter Sparks, Madison, Alec, Jackson, Caleb (Sara), MacKenzie, Jagr, Landon, Cadance, Colton, Olyvia, Hunter, Rowan, Maile, Faith, and Joshua Jr.  Marie has one great-great grandson, Hudson.

A service and celebration of life will be held at a later date.  Marie will be laid to rest next to her husband in Sitka National Cemetery.

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 2-26-21)

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 3:25 p.m. Friday.

New cases as of Thursday: 102

Total statewide – 55,989

Total (cumulative) deaths – 287

Total (cumulative) hospitalizations – 1,238

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

The City of Sitka posted the following update on COVID-19 cases in Sitka as of 5 p.m.Thursday.

Active cases in Sitka – 4

Hospitalizations (cumulative) in Sitka – 5

Cumulative Sitka cases – 323 (290 resident; 33 non-resident)

Cumulative recovered – 319

The local case data are from the City of Sitka website.




February 2001

Sitka Trail Works has announced that six weeks into its fundraising effort it has raised over $10,000. “We knew there were trail lovers out there, but I didn’t think we’d see such a strong early response,” Charles Horan, Sitka Trail Works president, said. “This is a great way to get things rolling toward our $25,000 goal.”

February 1971

Photo caption: Valerie Beacom and Rhonda Hames, members of the Order of Rainbow for Girls, get badges ready for a door-to-door heart fund drive Sunday. All members of the Sitka Assembly No. 12 will participate in the drive. Rainbow Mothers will assist with the counting of funds and providing transportation.