Irene Nellie Johnson

Posted: Friday, October 14, 2005

Haines resident Irene Nellie Johnson died Oct. 9, 2005, in Seattle.

She was born to Emma and Peter Hoolis Sr. on Feb. 6, 1936, in Sitka. She belonged to the Keet Goshi Hit (Killerwhale Dorsal Fin House) in Klukwan of the Dakl'aweid (Killerwhale Clan) and her Tlingit name was Aaytinaa. She was Lukaax.di dachxn (Grandchild of the Raven Sockeye clan) from Haines.

She graduated from Mount Edgecumbe High School and then worked at the Mount Edgecumbe hospital for seven years. She moved her family to Haines and worked at the Haines Packing cannery.

She worked for 27 years at the Haines Food Center grocery as a checkout clerk.

She enjoyed playing bingo, eating and exercising at the senior center and visiting family and friends. She was a sports fan and enjoyed watching television on those lazy days. Her friends and family said that she had "a positive outlook on life and lived each day completely and fully."

She was preceded in death by her son, Lee E. Johnson; her grandparents, James and Elsie Kasko; her parents, Emma and Peter Hoolis Sr.; her uncles, Otto Kasko, John Kasko and Edwin Kasko; her aunt, Marty Kasko-Stewart; and her siblings, George Hoolis, Peter Hoolis, Elizabeth Hoolis, Laura Bean and Sandy.

She is survived by her four children, James E. Donnelly Jr., Roberta M. Donnelly, Judith A. Johnson and Lynne M. Johnson; her ten grandchildren, Aaron Donnelly, Darren Shorty, Justin Henricks, Kelly Johnson, Kevin Clayton, Lindsey Hoffman, Martha Morris, Nicole Clayton, LeeAnna Morris and Cheyenne Morris; her first husband, James Donnelly Sr.; her four sisters and two brothers, Ann Johnson, Marilyn Devoyd, Kathy Dennis, Sandy Chase, Elsie Didrickson, Ed Kasko and Ben Didrickson; her aunt, Ruth Kasko; and numerous cousins, nieces, nephews and close friends.

Donations in her memory may be sent in care of Lorraine Kasko, P.O. Box 69, Haines, 99827.

Memorial services will be at 2 p.m. on Sunday, Oct. 16, at the Haines Alaska Native Brotherhood Hall. Lunch will follow the service.

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