Local News

Man drowns in Sitka Channel

A man died in Sitka over the weekend, after attempting to swim across Sitka Channel. According to a friend he had been in the water for at least 30 minutes before help was summoned.

Coast Guard helicopter crew medevacs man from cruise ship

A Coast Guard helicopter crew medevacked a 45-year-old man from the cruise ship Celebrity Solstice near Baranof Island on Monday (8-24-15).

Study: Tongass forest most resistant to climate change

Sport fishermen cast lines at Blind Slough, a Tongass National Forest site near Petersburg. (Ed Schoenfeld/CoastAlaska News)Some conservationists want President Obama’s climate change agenda to include Southeast Alaska’s rain forest.

Sitka Disaster Declaration moves to gov’s office

The City of Sitka has officially declared a Disaster Emergency, following the August 18 storm with brought seven landslides down in the community, and killed three people.

Weather expected to halt landslide recovery effort

National Weather Service Meteorologist Joel Curtis (left) spoke with reporters Friday, along with DOT geologist Mitch McDonald and Deputy Fire Chief Al Stevens (right). (Robert Woolsey, KCAW)Search teams in Sitka were racing the clock today, as they worked to find the third victim of Tuesday’s landslide before a new storm arrives tonight. Heavy rain and wind is forecast this weekend, which officials worry will make it unsafe for crews to work.

Memorial fund established for Diaz brothers

Elmer (l.) and Ulises Diaz were painting in the house destroyed by a landslide in Sitka Tuesday. The volunteer crew that recovered their bodies included teammates and former coaches from Sitka High School. (GoFundMe photo)Officials have released the names of the two landslide victims recovered on Wednesday and Thursday. They have been identified as brothers Elmer and Ulises Diaz, ages 26 and 25.

Postcard: Training the next generation of Tlingit speakers

More testingA week-long Tlingit immersion project wrapped up earlier this month in Sitka (08-07-15). About 60 attendees ranging in age from 5 to 50 packed Mt. Edgecumbe High School's Heritage Hall to learn and play in Tlingit. One activity was a Tlingit spelling bee. KCAW's Sarah Gibson met the program organizer, Heather Powell, and sent this audio postcard.

Two bodies recovered in Sitka slide, search continues for third

Recovery crews halt work while a trained cadaver dog scents the site where the body of 62-year-old William Stortz is thought to be located. A previous dog alerted at the location of the green stake in the center of the image. (KCAW photo, Robert Woolsey)Search crews have recovered two bodies from the Kramer Avenue landslide in Sitka. One man remains missing but crews are focused on an area identified by search dogs. Officials hope to recover all three bodies before heavy rain predicted Friday.

Red Cross coordinates feeding of Sitka’s landslide army

150820_BillWalker_waldholzA small army of people is working on recovery efforts following Tuesday’s landslides in Sitka. And as any general knows, an army marches on its stomach.

Crews focus on likely site of third slide victim

With two bodies already recovered from the Kramer Avenue landslide, crews are focusing their full efforts Thursday afternoon (8-20-15) on locating the body of 62-year-old William Stortz, Sitka's building official.