Drena Ann Austin, 47, Koot'-shee, Raven/Beaver of the Raven Bone House of Angoon, died April 23, 2004, at Bartlett Regional Hospital in Juneau after a brief battle with a rare type of cancer.
She was born Aug. 30, 1956, in Juneau, the daughter of Lillian (Parduhn) and Wilmer Austin (Wooshkeetaan clan) of Hoonah. She attended Capital Elementary and Juneau-Douglas High School. In 1978 she was one of the first four paraprofessional alcoholism counselors to graduate and be certified by the State of Alaska. She also worked at various government jobs in Sitka and Juneau.
Her family said she loved fishing, hiking, berry picking and was well known for her beautiful beadwork.
She is preceded in death by her father; sister, Vivian June Austin; grandmothers, Mabel Nelson and Lucille Dick; grandfathers, Billy Johnson (Kaag waan taan, of the Eagle Nest House of Sitka) and Jack Austin Sr.
She is survived by her daughter, Kristen M. Carleson of Anchorage; sons, David Widick of Anchorage and Eric Carleson of Juneau; sisters, Darlene Thomas, Rowena (Dale) Reeves and Jamiaan (Russ) Stevens; brothers, William R. (Karen Reyes) Stauffer, Wilmer, Victor and Evans Austin; grandchildren, Gary and Anndrena Howard, Amia and Tiana Smith, all of Anchorage; aunts, Marie Shodda of Yakutat, Gertrude Peters of Tacoma, Wash., Rachel (Dick) Jennings of Stanwood, Wash, May George, Diane Church, Ruby Nelson and Edna James, all of Juneau; uncles, Victor Johnson, Richard Dick of Skagway, Chuck Jennings of Standwood, Wash.; and numerous nieces, nephews and cousins.
Pallbearers are Val Peterson, Dale Reeves, Leonard Johnson, David Austin, James Goenett, Andy "Buddy" Soriano and Russ Stevens. Honorary pallbearers are Reggie Peterson, Richard Dick, James Parduhn, William Kanosh, Lester Davis, Lee George, William B. Stauffer, Alfred McKinley, Walter Bennett, Randy Williams, Joey George, Peter Jack and Mac Corpuz Jr.
A memorial service will be held at 6 p.m. Thursday, April 29, at the Tlingit and Haida Community Center (THCC), 3235 Hospital Drive. A reception will follow. The funeral service will also be held at noon Friday, April 30, at the THCC. Interment will follow at the Alaskan Memorial Park. Pastors Jerry Bennett and Richard Green will be officiating.
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