Ralph Knudson Sr. (L) and James Knudson Sr.

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Ralph Knudson, Sr. (L) and James Knudson Sr. served in the US Army

Ralph Knudson Sr. was Chief of the Chookaneidi Clan from Naana Hit House in Hoonah. His Tlingit name was EeKanDuTeen, Child of the Lut Nakh Adi.

Ralph was born August 10, 1931 in Port Althrop to Amy Marvin and Sam Knudson Jr. He was raised with brothers James, Samuel, Harold, Mike and sister Mary (Knudson) Rudolph. As a child, his brothers and sister along with his mother and step-father Harry Marvin lived in Hoonah at Icy Straits Cannery.

He attended the Wrangell Institute and Mt. Edgecumbe High School.

In their house in Hoonah, Ralph enjoyed playing guitar upstairs with his brothers and would have his sister Mary iron their clothes for dances. He enjoyed playing basketball, hunting, fishing, and his Sunday Family BBQ's and picnics. He loved fishing at Inian Islands, Three Hill, Inside Passage, Second Light, Middle Pass, and the Laundry.

Ralph met his lifetime love Harriet Gray in Hoonah when he was playing basketball at the ANB Hall. It was love at first sight. From there, they met up in Bellingham, Washington and married August 21, 1954 at 12:45 a.m. Ralph and Harriet shared 57 wonderful years of marriage together. They had eight children, Mary, Ralph Jr., Howard, Kelvin, Irene, Harriet, Ralphenia, and Torvald.

Ralph loved and cherished all grandchildren, great-grandchildren, nieces and nephews. He went to all of the family events and took great pride in being an active grandpa in all of their lives.

Ralph was a man of many talents:  Chief of Police in Hoonah, fish packer, worked as the only licensed Powder Man for BIA, commercial fisherman on F/V Yukon Second, power plant manager, heavy equipment operator, businessman, Commissioner of Public Safety, Fireman, Manager of the Lodge, Cook at the ANB Hall and also as Foreman for the Beach Gang in Excursion Inlet.

Ralph proudly served in the United States Army from September 1950 to 1953. He volunteered his time with the Lions Club and served terms as the President and Vice President. He enjoyed his involvement with numerous Lions Club events such as the Annual Gold Medal Basketball Tournament. He was a Lifetime Member of the Alaska Native Brotherhood Camp #12 and also served as the President. He was a member of the Elks American Legion Club in Sitka.

At his passing, Ralph was survived by his beloved wife, Harriet Knudson, his children, Mary Erickson (Jim), Ralph Knudson Jr., Kelvin Knudson, Irene Knudson (Leo), Harriet Knudson, Ralphenia Knudson, Torvald Knudson (Janice), his sister Mary (Knudson) Rudolph and brother Mike Knudson Sr. as well as numerous grandchildren, great-grand children, cousins, nieces and nephews.

Ralph was preceded in death by his son Howard "Howie" H. Knudson, his father Sam Knudson Jr., mother Amy Marvin, step-dad Harry Marvin, brothers Harold Knudson, Samuel Knudson, and James Knudson Sr.

Ralph Knudson Sr. walked into the forest November 1, 2011 at 4:05 am surrounded by the love of his wife, children and grandchildren with dignity and strength. There was a Chookaneidi Service in Hoonah at 12:00 p.m. on Monday, November 7, 2011.

The above was published in the Juneau Empire from Nov. 6, 2011.

James Knudson

James Knudson Sr. was born January 19, 1929 in Hoonah, and died September 17, 1991 in Seattle, Washington.  He was buried in Hoonah.

He was in the US Army in 1952 according to the death certificate of John George Fawcett, Alaska Vital Statistics, 1952.

He married Beatrice Hanlon, a 21 year old Alaska native cannery worker from Hoonah.

He died of cancer at Northwestern Hospital in Seattle, WA.

He was captain of the fishing boat Monitor; he later moved to Juneau where he worked construction.

He moved to Anaheim, California to be closer to his grandchildren. He continued in the construction trade in California.