Former Sitka Resident Frank B. Richards Dies

Frank Benham Richards

Frank Benham Richards, a longtime Sitka resident and businessman, passed on July 26, 2023, in Washington, Pennsylvania, surrounded by family. He was 74.Frank Benham Richards, a longtime Sitka resident and businessman, passed on July 26, 2023, in Washington, Pennsylvania, surrounded by family. He was 74.

Frank was born Nov. 11, 1948, in the Sitka Pioneers Home to Frank H.B. and Mary (Buckland) Richards. He attended Sitka High School, then went on to college at Lewis & Clark in Vancouver, Washington, finishing at Western Washington in Bellingham with a bachelor degree in industrial arts and a minor in accounting.

Returning to Sitka, he was the shop teacher at Sitka High, became the city building inspector, then opened his own businesses, Baranof Electric and the Potlatch Hotel. He also owned the former U.S. Forest Service building at Katlian Street and Siginaka Way.

Frank was involved in the community, serving on the Assembly and the Sitka Community Hospital board, and supporting local events.

He moved to Sequim, Washington, in 2013, and was there until this past May when he moved to Pennsylvania to be with one of his sons, Kevin.

He is remembered as a loving father and grandfather.

Frank’s second wife,  Pamela Robertson-Richards, died in 2019. He was divorced from his first wife, Rebecca Maisel-Myer.

Frank is survived by his two sons and their families, Kevin and Tawnya and children Gavin, Kayda, and Eli, of Washington, Pennsylvania, and Christopher and Patricia and children Maya and Blake, of Houston, Texas; his brother, Norman Richards of Sitka; and a half-sister, Monica Melanie Clark of Granite Bay, California.

A remembrance of Frank’s life will be held from noon to 3 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 10, at the Sitka Elks Lodge.

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At a Glance

(updated 9-12-2023)

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 8:57 a.m. Tuesday, September 12.

New cases as of Tuesday: 278

Total cases (cumulative) statewide – 301,513

Total (cumulative) deaths – 1,485

Case Rate per 100,000 – 38.14

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

COVID in Sitka

The Sitka community level is now "Low.'' Case statistics are as of Tuesday.

Case Rate/100,000 – 152.50

Cases in last 7 days – 13

Cumulative Sitka cases – 3,575

Deceased (cumulative) – 10

The local case data are from Alaska DHSS.






September 2003

After the season-opening Ketchikan High School swim meet last week, Sitka High swimmer Matt Way is ranked first in the state in the100-meter breaststroke, while Carrington Gorman is ranked second in the 50-meter freestyle.



September 1973

From Around Town: Sitka Historical Society met Sunday at the Centennial Building with the people who had hosted the Historical Room during tour ship visits here. The ladies of the society served a nice Russian Tea from their samovar, and passed around Russian tea cakes.