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Seward resident Margaret Branson, 78, died Nov. 29, 2005, at Providence Hospital in Anchorage.
There will be a community reception at 2 p.m. Dec. 11 at the Seward Sealife Center. Remembrances may be sent to P.O. Box 271, Seward, AK, 99664.
Born in 1927 in Sheridan, Wyo., she came to Alaska in 1958, landing in Sitka. She moved to Cooper Landing in 1966. She was the president of the community club, the beginning of her many years of public service to her communities and to her state. During that time she got community support and state funding for acquiring land and moving the historical community club building from alongside the highway to the community park, where it is today.
She was a member of the Kenai Peninsula Borough Assembly and a House representative from District 5 from 1979 to 1980. In those days, the district included Cooper Landing, Moose Pass, Hope, Whittier, Valdez, Kenny Lake and Glennallen. She was chairman of the New Capitol Site Planning Commission and recently served on the committee to select a new capitol building in Juneau.
She moved to Seward in 1980. In addition to owning and operating her own art gallery and serving on the Seward City Council, she was president of the Seward Community Library Association (Friends of the Library) and the president of the Providence Alaska Foundation/Seward. In her home, she hosted a communitywide Christmas tree silent auction. The first year, the auction raised enough money to buy goosedown patient bags for area ambulances. She was always politically active, hosting candidate functions in her home, particularly for women candidates. She mentored aspiring politicians on the local level in Seward and elsewhere.
Friends said, "Margaret Branson had many friends. That her friends are of all ages and come from all walks of life demonstrated her ability to inspire and to work on behalf of her communities."
She was preceded in death by her son, Malcolm; and husband, Ralph.
She is survived by her daughter, Melissa Fouse; sons, Seth and Alec Branson; and grandchildren, Derrick, Kendra and Scottie Branson.