WALK THE VOTE – About a dozen Sitkans walk from the O'Connell Bridge to Harrigan Centennial   Hall this afternoon to encourage people to vote in the general election. Early voting in Sitka started Monday. Voting hours are 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. weekdays through November 2 in Room 3 at Centennial Hall, with access through doors that remain open to the outside.  Items on the ballot include the presidential election, U.S. and state House and Senate seats, two ballot measures and the retention of state judges. (Sentinel Photo by James Poulson)

Services to be Sept. 5 For Gilbert R. Sam Sr.

Gilbert Roy “Gibby” Sam Sr.

Services for Gilbert Roy “Gibby” Sam Sr., a lifelong Sitka resident, have been scheduled 2 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 5, at St. Michael’s Cathedral.

Gilbert passed away in Sitka on August 20, his 65th birthday.

He was born in Sitka August 20, 1955, the son of Katherine Maberry and Henry Sam Sr. He grew up in Sitka, and graduated from Sitka High School in 1974. He joined the U.S. Marines not long after graduation.

After his discharge he returned to Sitka, and married Audrey Johnson on Feb. 23, 1979, in Sitka. They were married for 29 years, and had five children, Elmenda Johnson (who preceded him in death), Isabelle Sam, Tanya Ulrich, Sharon Sam and Gilbert Sam Jr.

Gilbert worked in maintenance at SEARHC for 20 years, over the years earning numerous certificates.

An artist, he did carvings of many different subjects, loved to draw and made many paintings and designs – some of his designs were put on T-shirts.

He also enjoyed cooking for an army, either in the house or on the grill; and liked to work on cars.

His sense of humor will be missed.

Gilbert was preceded in death by his parents, Katherine Maberry and Henry Sam Sr.; his wife, Audrey; his daughter, Elmenda Johnson; his paternal grandparents John and Isabelle Sam; and other extended family members including Albert and Gail Davis, Edward and Sara James, David Davis, Frank Sam, Elizabeth (Betty) Garrity, Irma Button, Buddy Howard, Lester Davis, Ronald Davis, Philip Nielsen and Doug James.

He also was preceded in death by Audrey (Sugie) Johnson; in-laws Joseph and Agnes Johnson Sr., Cindy and Tony Johnson Sr., Wilber Johnson, Chuck Johnson, Blake Ricaporte, Virginia (Gina) Sam, Norma (Queenie) Johnson, Leonard Gamble, Art Gamble, Nick and Georgie Chercasen, and Angel Platt.

He is survived by his children, Isabelle Sam of Anchorage, Tanya Ulrich of Juneau, Sharon Sam of Sitka and Gilbert Sam Jr.; 17 grandchildren and five great-grandchildren. Numerous brothers, sisters, aunts, uncles, cousins, nieces, nephews, grandnieces and grandnephews.

Pallbearers will be Henry Johnson Sr., Ernie Barnes, Ray Howard, Gilbert Sam Jr., Douglas Johnson Jr. and Demetri Lestenkoff III.

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 10-23-20)

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 11:20 a.m. Friday.

New cases as of Thursday: 239

Total statewide – 12,118

Total (cumulative) deaths – 68

Active cases in Sitka – 10 (7 resident; 3 non-resident) *

Recovered cases in Sitka – 62 (49 resident; 13 non-resident) *

Hospitalized in Sitka – 1

The state says the cumulative number of cases hospitalized is 385.

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. 




October 2000

Sitka Sportsman’s Association Alaska Day Biathlon was held at the Robert LaGuire indoor shooting range. In the individual men’s division, Mike Fink took first with a time of 22:48; Kristian Pickerell took second with 27:14; and Clay Thomas was third in 27:29. Best men’s shooter was Dave Garland with five hits prone and three hits standing.

October 1970

Sitka’s increasingly famous New Archangel Dancers will perform for Alaska Day. … Dancers are Stella Conway, Ernestine Massey, Jim Lang, Jan Turner, Patsy DuBrock, Karen Grussendorf, Kathy Trani, Sandy Harang, Lorelie Jensen, Nancy Andersen, Mary Lou McIntyre, Jane Valente, Betty Howey and Suzette Taylor.