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)

Betty Lou Howey Dies; Came to Sitka in 1954

Betty Lou (Fink) Howey

A memorial for Betty Lou (Fink) Howey, a longtime Sitka resident, will be held 1 p.m. Friday, April 23, at Sitka Memorial Park, 803 Sawmill Creek Road.

Those attending will have an opportunity to give comments.

Betty died April 9 in Sitka, at the age of 86.

She was born Aug. 31, 1934, in Wisconsin, and  traveled to Sitka in 1954 in search of adventure and good employment.

She worked in payroll at Alaska Pulp Corp. from 1953 to 1993, and was  an employee and part owner of both the Nugget Restaurant and Lulu’s Diner, and maintained a variety of odd jobs well into her 70s. A customer told of going to Lulu’s for breakfast several years ago and finding Betty was alone, doing the serving, cooking, running the cash register and cleaning up – and smiling and visiting while she soloed.

Outgoing, energetic and funny, she was active in many community organizations, including the Sitka Russian Dancers. She joined the group when it formed and performed multiple shows daily every summer, seldom missing a practice right up until the mandatory retirement age.

She sponsored Howey’s Nuggets softball team, and was a player for more than 20 years, while also taking part in women’s and couples bowling leagues.

“Mom was a true Sitka pioneer,” her family said. “She was a fun-loving, devoted and faithful member of the Sitka community. And though osteoporosis and age had an impact on her physically, her spirit and determination only increased with age.

“Her body eventually disintegrated (from) osteoporosis, but there was no quit in her. She simply refused to give up, and was constantly in search of means to repair her body.”

Her daily workouts at the gym were limited somewhat by COVID, but “she couldn’t wait to return again to her exercise routine, and literally frequented the gym ‘to her last day,’” her family said.

Betty is survived by her sons Bradley Howey (Edwina) of Lewiston, Idaho, and Bryan Howey (Dana) of Sitka;  grandchildren Ellexis Broschat (Andrew) of Sitka, Ashley Snooks (James) of Juneau, and Brent Howey, Talia Howey and Sarah Howey, all of Lewiston; and her sisters Patty Colton of Elma, Washington, Cheryl Paulsen, Debbie Sands and Roxanne Rowe, all of Iowa; and brother, Lance Rowe, of Iowa.

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.