Betty Russell Larsen

Posted: Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Betty Russell Larsen died peacefully Dec. 9, 2010 in Sitka surrounded by family and friends.

She was born in 1923 in Rochester, N.Y., to Alice and Fred Russell. After graduating from high school in Rochester, she and her sister Mary Alice joined the Navy in order to qualify for the GI Bill. She went on to earn bachelor’s and masters’ degrees in education and taught school in New York and California prior to moving to Alaska.

In 1959 she ran into her childhood neighbor, John Larsen, who was in Rochester visiting his parents. He convinced her to move to Juneau that summer. They married in Anchorage in 1962 and were living there during the 1964 earthquake. Later that year, they returned to Juneau and lived here until they retired in 1978.

Betty taught school in Douglas, Juneau and Anchorage. She enjoyed sewing, fishing and spending time with her family at their cabin in Taku Harbor. After they retired, she and John spent many happy years traveling and living in various locations in the Lower 48 and Canada. In 1999 they returned to Juneau and Betty moved into the Sitka Pioneer Home in 2001.

Betty was preceded in death by her parents and sister Mary Alice.

She is survived by her husband John, daughter Mary, sisters Marjorie and Jane, and many nieces and nephews.

Condolences should be addressed to John Larsen at P.O. Box 6047; Sitka, AK 99835.

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