CHECKING IT OUT – Fia Turczynewycz, a visitor from Ohio, walks her dog,  Mani, past the Sitka National Historical Park Visitor Center this morning. Tlingit master carver Tommy Joseph’s newly completed yellow cedar Waas’go pole, pictured in the background, was moved out of the park’s carving shed Thursday to make room for Joseph’s latest project – carving a Tlingit canoe with the aid of an apprentice. Joseph’s Waas’go pole is the third version of the Haida pole in the past century – a reproduction of a reproduction made in the 1930s by George Benson, which is placed inside the visitor center. Rangers are working on approval for a location along the park’s trail system for the new pole. (Sentinel Photo by James Poulson)

Services Held For Elmenda ‘Manda’ Johnson

Elmenda R. “Manda” Johnson

A celebration of the life of Elmenda R. “Manda” Johnson was held 5-8:30 p.m. Thursday, June 18, upstairs at the Moose Lodge. The gathering was a potluck.

A service was scheduled at St. Michael’s Cathedral at 4 p.m. Thursday, June 18.

Manda passed away from natural causes on May 28, in Juneau. She was 45.

She was born Sept. 25, 1972, in Sitka, and lived here most of her life. Her Tlingit name was Kaaxkwei and she was of the Kaagwaantaan clan. She was the song caller, a drummer and a master beader.

She loved to make and share her salmon spread and fry bread – and, best of all, her banana cream pie.

She also loved to play softball.

She was a member of the American Legion and Moose Lodge, and St. Michael’s Cathedral.

Kaaxkwei is survived by her children, Naomi Miller of Sitka, Jay and Edward Miller of Juneau, and Michael Miller of Michigan; and three beautiful grandchildren, Alina, Mary and Spencer Miller.

She also is survived by her sisters, Isabell Sam of Anchorage, Tanya Ulrich of Juneau and Sharon Sam of Sitka, and her brother, Gilbert Sam Jr., of Juneau.

Her aunties are Cheryl A. Duncan and Josephine M. Johnson, Sitka; and her uncles are Henry K. Johnson and Jacob G. Johnson of Sitka, Joseph C. Johnson Jr. and Everett A. Johnson of Juneau, and Norman W. Johnson and Michael P. Johnson of Seattle.

Kaaxkwei was preceded in death by her mother, Audrey E. Johnson; grandparents Joseph C. and Agnes F. Johnson and Henry Sam Sr. and Kathy Mayberry; and cousins Harry C. Johnson, Alexandra I. Platt, Rachel Johnson and Blake Ricaporte.

Those needing more information may call Josephine at 738-0712.

Login Form



Alaska COVID-19 
At a Glance

(updated 9-17-21)

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 10:47 a.m. Friday.

New cases as of Thursday: 875

Total statewide – 96,002

Total (cumulative) deaths – 454

Total (cumulative) hospitalizations – 2,207

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

COVID in Sitka

The COVID alert rate for Sitka is “high,” based on 14 new COVID cases in the past 7 days, a rate of 187.73 per 100,000 population. Alert status will be high until the rate per thousand is below 100. Case statistics are as of Thursday.

New cases in Sitka – 5

Cases in last 7 days – 16

Cumulative Sitka cases – 946

Positive cumulative test results in Sitka, as of 9/10/21 – 1,090

Deceased (cumulative) – 3

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

• • •


Sitka Vax Stats 

The State of Alaska DHSS reported Friday the following statistics on vaccinations for Sitka.

Partially vaccinated – 6,132 (83.03%)

Fully vaccinated – 5,991 (81.12%)

Total population (12+) – 7,385

Sitka has vaccinated fully vaccinated 89.85 percent of its senior population (1,478 total), age 65 and older. 

Vaccination data for the City and Borough of Sitka can be found online at:





September 2001

Alaska Pacific Bank has opened an account for donations to be directed to the families of the World Trade Center attack of Sept. 11. The account has been opened with a $2,000 contribution from the bank and an anonymous donor.

September 1971

At the Sitka Historical Society’s meeting Sunday, Mrs. Esther Billman of Sheldon Jackson College presented a “surprise package” of recent donations to the Sheldon Jackson Museum by Mr. Hugh Brady, youngest son of former Territorial Gov. John Brady.