SMILE! – The Pacific High School graduating class poses outside Harrigan Centennial Hall Saturday afternoon prior to their commencement ceremony. Because of COVID-19 concerns the ceremony was not open to the public. Pictured are Eric Alvarado,Chelsea Taylor, Madison Roy-Mercer, Lindsey Bartolaba, Melissa Gibson, Douglas Johnson, Korbin Tugmon, George Stevenson, Jayvan Iya-Kowchee and Elizabeth Newell. Sitka High School will hold its graduation ceremony Monday, May 24. (Sentinel Photo by James Poulson)

Service Set in Nebraska For Former Sitkan Scott Stahla

Scott E. Stahla


Former Sitkan Scott E. Stahla of Smithfield, Nebraska, died of cancer   on Friday, July 17, 2020, at Emerald Nursing and Rehab in Cozad, surrounded by his family. He was 51.

Scott was born May 29, 1969, at Kimball, Nebraska, to Edward A. and Kathy (Schwindt) Stahla. His family lived in Ketchikan at the time and had returned to Kimball for the funeral of Ed’s dad. After Scott’s birth they returned to Ketchikan.

In 1977, the family moved to Sitka, and Scott received his education from Sitka Public Schools, graduating from Sitka High in 1987.

Growing up in Sitka had its fair share of outdoor activities. Scott, spent his earlier years driving ATVs and boats, and harvesting some of Alaska’s natural resources. Once he graduated from high school Scott was falling timber, setting chokers, and hauling wood during remote logging operations in Southeast Alaska. 

The shipping industry wrapped up the majority of his final years in Alaska. He skillfully used cranes in all weather conditions to unload and load barges on the Bering Sea. After the adventures in the last frontier came to an end, Scott worked in Idaho building a home and then settled near Lexington to live closer to his parents, Ed and Kathy Stahla.

While living in the Lexington area, Scott worked for Todd Booth, remodeling homes and running machinery. Scott was a hard worker and took great pride in his craft and tools.

Scott leaves to celebrate his life his parents, Ed and Kathy of Smithfield; his children, Marissa C. (Derek) Fairbanks of Winston, Oregon, and Erik A. Stahla of Springfield, Oregon; two grandchildren, Carmen R. and Colin L. Fairbanks of Winston; a sister, Pamela Stahla (Michael) Kernin of Sitka; niece, Nichel Kernin (Chance) Allen of Unalaska; nephew, Alex Kernin of Sitka; and a great-nephew, Parker Allen of Unalaska.

Also surviving are aunts and uncles, Ron (Connie) Schwindt of Mesa, Arizona, Ron (Mary) Stahla of Lexington, Byron (Jeanne) Stahla of Plano, Texas, and Betty Kibby of Durango, Colorado; his dog, Romeo; and cousins, extended family and friends.

He was preceded in death by his grandparents, Carl and Henrietta Schwindt and August and Sarah Stahla; his uncle, Jim Schwindt; aunt, Charlotte Schwindt; and cousin, Nicki Schwindt.

A celebration of life service will be held 11 a.m. Friday, July 24, at Reynolds-Love Funeral Home in Lexington with Rock Stahla, a cousin, officiating. The service will be live streamed via the Reynolds Love Facebook page.

There will be no visitation, as the family is honoring Scott’s wish for cremation. Burial will be held at a later date.

A memorial has been established in Scott’s honor, and kindly suggested to go to the Dawson County Relay For Life.

Online condolences may be shared with the family at

August 5, 2020

A Note To Our Readers

Reopening: Phase One:


On March 30, 2020, 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 5-17-21)

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 12:45 p.m. Monday.

New cases as of Sunday: 50

Total statewide – 66,814

Total (cumulative) deaths – 358

Total (cumulative) hospitalizations – 1,542

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. Friday.

Active cases in Sitka – 7

Hospitalizations (cumulative) in Sitka – 5

Cumulative Sitka cases – 372 (325 resident; 46 non-resident)

Cumulative recovered – 364

Deceased (cumulative) – 1

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

• • •


Sitka Vax Stats 

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

Partially vaccinated – 4,978 (71.64%)

Fully vaccinated – 4,612 (66.37%)

Total population (16+) –6,949

Sitka has vaccinated (with at least one dose) 1,245 (84.24%) 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:





May 2001

Sitka High boys track team ran to a 2nd-place finish in Juneau while the girls finished fourth. Sitka long-jumper Derek Hirai leapt 19’9.5” for the 2nd highest jump in the state this year. ... Others doing well were Thor Hartwig, Matt Mangini, Damien LaMar, Jeff Loiselle, Logan Wild, Elgin Hollins, Brian Friske, Brian Mork, Mike Bagley, Cody Campbell ....

May 1971

New Loyal Order of Moose officers, installed Saturday, are Earl Arnold, Grant Laiblin Jr., James Gardner, William Wakefield Jr., Eddielee Hodnett, Basil Riley, Lloyd Van Doren, James Firestone Sr. and Lynden Kincaid.