Thomas “Sonny” Young Jr.

Category: Obituaries
Created on Thursday, 25 July 2013 13:29
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Thomas “Sonny” Young Jr., Kuchein Xayaxkoosti, walked into the forest July 21, 2013.
An ANB and ANS service will be 6 p.m. tonight at the Sheet-ka Kwaan Naa Kahidi. The funeral will be 11 a.m. Friday, July 26, at St. Michael’s Cathedral, followed by graveside services at the Russian Cemetery, and then a reception back at the church.
Sonny was born to Charlotte (Littlefield) and Thomas Young Sr., on Nov. 19, 1939, in Sitka. He was Kaagwaantaan and Kook Hit Yadi Saati (housemaster of the Little Box House). He was a GaanaxteidÍ Yadi (a child of the GaanaxteidÍ through Thomas Young Sr., Kaajeetguxeex), and a Shangukeidi dachxan (a grandchild of the Shangukeidi through Shorty Kindagein).
Sonny grew up on fishing boats. He fished in the summer and worked on tug boats in the winter, and for many years was at times with Samson Tug & Barge.
He served in the U.S. Marine Corps.
For many years, Sonny served as the head cook at the ANB Hall for the community Thanksgiving and Christmas dinners, and also at potlatch and pay-off parties, and fundraisers. He was always ready there in the kitchen, either at the ANB Hall or wherever the party was being held, with a big smile and Jennifer there to get her Raven fingers in the pot.
Sonny was a hunter, fisherman, trapper and all-around nice guy, always there when someone needed a hug or just a smile and a shoulder to cry on. He will be missed dearly.
He was proud to have earned his GED so he could get employment at Southeast Alaska Regional Health Consortium. He received a Rural Human Services certificate through the University of Alaska Fairbanks. He processed food so clean with high quality out of respect for the people who were going to eat it. He passed on his cooking skills to his loving sons. “He was so knowledgeable, he had a way of explaining everything through words, through example, through repetition, to make you understand,” his family said. “He did this in a manner that it became second nature to his sons and they show that respect to their father to this day.”
He was a great speaker and talked in his language fluently and when he talked many listened. He had some talking circles that he had set up at STA’s Healing House.
Don’t sweat the small stuff, Sonny.
Sonny is survived by his loving wife Jennifer (Duncan) Young; children Thomas (Jacklyn) Young III, Jeffrey Young, and Mitchell (Kaitlyn) Young, all of Sitka, and Amy Young of Montana; siblings Lawrence (Marie) Young, Alfreda Lang, “Jim” William (Sandy) Young, and Ed (Nancy) Young; grandchildren Samantha, Courtney and James Young, all of Sitka, Darren Young of Angoon and Tate Young; and great-grandchildren Tailyn and Taia.
He also is survived by uncles Harry Jimmy and Smitty Katzeek; aunt Agnes Johnson; and numerous nieces, nephews and cousins.
He was preceded in death by his parents, Thomas and Charlotte Young; siblings Lester Young, Henry Young, Pearl Dick, Evelyn (Auntie Ev) Arriola and Marilyn Carlson; sons James Young and Lester Young; maternal grandparents John and Annie Littlefield; great-grandparents Nick and Lottie Peters (paternal) and Francis Young; and uncles John Shorty, Ronald Gamble and Art Gamble.
Pallbearers will be Thomas Young III, Jeffrey Young, Mitchell Young, Bob Sam, Josh Arnold, Tom Gamble and Docy Merculief.
Honorary pallbearers are John Duncan, Herman Davis, Harry Jimmy, Smith Katzeek, Chad Titell, John Littlefield, Lester Widmark, Spike Arnold and Mick “Highpockets” Diamond.