Martha Nelson


Posted: Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Angoon resident Martha (Johnson) Nelson, Kindu.éin, Ch'aak Tláa, died Nov. 18, 2007, at Mt. Edgecumble Hospital in Sitka, surrounded by family and friends. She was 94.

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She was born Aug. 15, 1913, to Billy (Aayéil) and Annie (Láxshaadoosti) Johnson.

She was Deisheetaan yádi, her father coming from the Raven Bones House in Angoon. She was a Dakl'aweidí grandchild, her grandfather coming from the Killer Whale House in Angoon, a man named Gusht'eiheen.

Her mother was also a Deisheetaan yádi, her father Kooneik coming from the Fresh Water Spring House in Angoon, and her paternal grandfather, Kooneik esh, was a Yanyeidí from Taku. The mother of Annie was a woman known as Shaawatgé.

She was the oldest member of the Eagle Nest House of the Sitka Kaagwaantaan. She was made the Naa Tláa (clan mother) many years ago and given the name Ch'aak Tláa (Eagle Mother) relating to a story from her clan house.

She was preceded in death by her husband, William Nelson (Tahín), who died in 1989.

She is survived by her daughters, Amy Walker, Dorothy Gamble and her husband, Edward, and Joanne and (Allen) Miller; sons, John Nelson II, Reggie Nelson and his wife, Bernice, Arnold, Lawrence and Sam Nelson, Norman Nelson and his wife, Geraldine, Mike Nelson, and William Nelson Jr.; numerous grandchildren, including Arnold Walker Jr., Anna Walker, Sharon Zuboff, Phillip Walker, Susan Helgeson and Patrick Walker; great-grandchildren, nieces and nephews; and cousins, Edna James, Ruby Bell, Diane Church, Lillian Pardune, Paul Chulik, Thomas Young, George Nelson Jr. and Mary Starr.

Honorary pall bearers are Lydia George, Verna Johnson, June Pegeus, Elsie John, Sophie Frank, Selina Everson, Liz Frank, Ella Bennett, Edna James, Ruby Nelson, Sally Kookesh, Joe Nakamura and Marge Gamble.

Juneau services will be at 7 p.m. on Wednesday at Glacier Valley Church of God. Angoon services will be at noon on Friday at the Alaska Native Brotherhood Hall.

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