Melba E. VanHorn Dies; Longtime Sitkan was 98

Melba Evelyn VanHorn


Melba Evelyn VanHorn, a Sitka resident for 41 years, passed away here on May 23, at the age of 98.

She was born June 17, 1923, in Binkelman, Nebraska, the daughter of Grace and Lovell Miller.

She moved to Sitka from Lebanon, Oregon, on May 30, 1980. A baker, she worked at the Nugget Restaurant and Sea Mart.

Melba was well loved by her family and friends – a cheerful, loving and vibrant grandmother. She loved spending time with her granddaughters, Tammy and Tanna, and her eight great-grandchildren.

She enjoyed attending Grace Harbor church. She liked doing crafts, including crocheting, knitting and sewing, and baking was a favorite hobby.

Melba was preceded in death by her husbands, Dammas “Dick” Dekuyper and Allen VanHorn; daughters Gloria Jean Little and Sandra (Little) Tucker; a sister, Margorie (Miller) Furguson; brother Eldred “Buck” Miller; and step-granddaughter, Dawna Tucker.

She is survived by her granddaughter Tanna Bartlett and husband Mark Bartlett; great-grandchildren Sharla Boddy Bartlett, Curt Bartlett, Derek Bartlett and Ryan Bartlett, all of Sitka; granddaughter Tammy Sumauang and husband Emy Sumauang and great-grandchildren Brody Sumauang, Jaren Sumauang, Kyler Sumauang and Santanna Sumauang, all of Sitka; son-in-law Leonard Tucker of Sitka; and step-grandson William Dale Tucker.

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At a Glance

(updated 5-18-22)

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 11:55 pm Wednesday, May 18.

New cases as of Wednesday: 1,675

Total cases (cumulative) statewide – 249,522

Total (cumulative) deaths – 1,252

Total (cumulative) hospitalizations – 3,762

Current Hospitalizations – 44

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

COVID in Sitka

The Sitka community level is now "medium.'' Case statistics are as of Wednesday.

Cases in last 7 days – 54

Cumulative Sitka cases – 2,633

Hospitalizations (to date) – 32

Deceased (cumulative) – 6

The local case data are from Alaska DHSS.





May 2002

Police blotter: Two juveniles who were seen throwing their belonging at each other were told to stop or face arrest. ... A woman was reported arguing with her husband and friends, all of whom agreed she had been drinking too much. ... A man said he thought a neighbor had his missing cat, but the neighbor showed police his cat and her six kittens. A watch will be kept for the missing cat.


May 2002

 There will not be a commercial herring spawn and help fishery in the Sitka area, Jim Parker, Fish & Game fisheries management biologist, announced.  There’s been good herring spawn but herring haven’t spawned in the macrocystis kelp beds.