Michael S. Lockett

Michael S. Lockett / Juneau Empire
People gather to view a child through a window at Bartlett Regional Hospital on Dec. 15. Juneau and Alaska’s overall population is shrinking due to high numbers of emigrating boomers and low numbers of childbirths.

Few arrivals and many departures: Alaska and Juneau populations continue to shrink

With few exceptions, towns and cities across Alaska are shedding bodies.

Michael S. Lockett / Juneau Empire
People gather to view a child through a window at Bartlett Regional Hospital on Dec. 15. Juneau and Alaska’s overall population is shrinking due to high numbers of emigrating boomers and low numbers of childbirths.
Abby Jones, an emergency worker for Capital City Fire/Rescue, checks in a Juneau resident for free asymptomatic testing on Dec. 31, 2021. (Ben Hohenstatt / Juneau Empire)

City shares testing, vaccination updates

Less than 1 in 100 people being tested is coming up positive.

Abby Jones, an emergency worker for Capital City Fire/Rescue, checks in a Juneau resident for free asymptomatic testing on Dec. 31, 2021. (Ben Hohenstatt / Juneau Empire)
Trump supporters try to break through a police barrier, Wednesday, Jan. 6, 2021, at the Capitol in Washington. (AP Photo/John Minchillo)

Alaska leaders condemn violence at US Capitol

Many of Alaska’s elected representatives were on-site when rioters breached the building.

Trump supporters try to break through a police barrier, Wednesday, Jan. 6, 2021, at the Capitol in Washington. (AP Photo/John Minchillo)
Kevin McCallister and Alexus Forehand smile with their recently born daughter, Madelynn Rose. The McCallisters of Skagway are the parents of the first baby born at Bartlett Regional Hospital in 2021. (Courtesy Photo / BRH)

Bartlett Regional Hospital welcomes first baby of 2021

The Skagway family will return home with a baby- and a boat.

Kevin McCallister and Alexus Forehand smile with their recently born daughter, Madelynn Rose. The McCallisters of Skagway are the parents of the first baby born at Bartlett Regional Hospital in 2021. (Courtesy Photo / BRH)
Petty Officer 1st Class Cynthia Oldham / USCG 
Coast Guard Cutter Polar Star navigates heavy seas in the Gulf of Alaska, Thursday, Dec. 10, 2020. The icebreaker is supporting an increasingly prioritized mission in the region, according the the Coast Guard.

Coast Guard icebreaker sets U.S. record for northernmost winter approach

The mission is as much to reaffirm presence as to train a new generation of coldwater sailors.

Petty Officer 1st Class Cynthia Oldham / USCG 
Coast Guard Cutter Polar Star navigates heavy seas in the Gulf of Alaska, Thursday, Dec. 10, 2020. The icebreaker is supporting an increasingly prioritized mission in the region, according the the Coast Guard.
Sherri McDonald and Reid Tippets dry off after their annual dip in the water at Auke Recreation Picnic Area on New Years Day, Jan. 1, 2021. Tippets said he’d done the dip for 11 years in a row. The Polar Bear Dip, held for 30 years at Auke Rec, was canceled this year over pandemic concerns, but some individual households opted to make the dip with their families, with masks, distancing, and care very much in evidence, while other pods had fires or walked dogs next to the cold ocean. (Michael S. Lockett / Juneau Empire)
Sherri McDonald and Reid Tippets dry off after their annual dip in the water at Auke Recreation Picnic Area on New Years Day, Jan. 1, 2021. Tippets said he’d done the dip for 11 years in a row. The Polar Bear Dip, held for 30 years at Auke Rec, was canceled this year over pandemic concerns, but some individual households opted to make the dip with their families, with masks, distancing, and care very much in evidence, while other pods had fires or walked dogs next to the cold ocean. (Michael S. Lockett / Juneau Empire)
A bald eagle found near Montana Creek Road on Dec. 22 had to be euthanized due to injuries, visible here, received from a lead shot fired from a shotgun. The Fish and Wildlife Service is offering a reward for information on the shooter. (Courtesy photo / Juneau Raptor Center)

Authorities investigate fatal shooting of bald eagle

The otherwise healthy, adult bird had to be euthanized for its injuries.

A bald eagle found near Montana Creek Road on Dec. 22 had to be euthanized due to injuries, visible here, received from a lead shot fired from a shotgun. The Fish and Wildlife Service is offering a reward for information on the shooter. (Courtesy photo / Juneau Raptor Center)
Fireworks light up the sky above the Mendenhall Valley the evening of Dec. 31, 2020. (Ben Hohenstatt / Juneau Empire)

Police talk fireworks and New Year’s Eve safety

Don’t celebrate the end of 2020 too hard.

Fireworks light up the sky above the Mendenhall Valley the evening of Dec. 31, 2020. (Ben Hohenstatt / Juneau Empire)
Sarah Palmer talks to a driver before administering a COVID-19 test. The City and Borough of Juneau is offering free, asymptomatic testing. The drive-thru testing is available daily through Jan. 10 with the exception of New Year’s Day. (Ben Hohenstatt / Juneau Empire)

COVID-19 among leading causes of death for Alaska in 2020

When the final numbers come in, the disease may be fourth or fifth leading cause of death in-state.

Sarah Palmer talks to a driver before administering a COVID-19 test. The City and Borough of Juneau is offering free, asymptomatic testing. The drive-thru testing is available daily through Jan. 10 with the exception of New Year’s Day. (Ben Hohenstatt / Juneau Empire)
Elizabeth Peratrovich was featured in a Google doodle, seen above, on Dec. 30, 2020. The Tlingit civil rights activist was illustrated by a Sitka-based Tlingit artist for the tech company. (Courtesy art / Google)
Elizabeth Peratrovich was featured in a Google doodle, seen above, on Dec. 30, 2020. The Tlingit civil rights activist was illustrated by a Sitka-based Tlingit artist for the tech company. (Courtesy art / Google)
Rep. Jennifer Johnston, R-Anchorage, gets her temperature taken as she enters the Alaska State Capitol on Monday, May 18, 2020. New policies will require all staff and legislators to wear masks in chambers. (Peter Segall / Juneau Empire File)

Legislative Council sets mask policy for upcoming session

Only one representative out of twelve legislators voted against the mask policy.

Rep. Jennifer Johnston, R-Anchorage, gets her temperature taken as she enters the Alaska State Capitol on Monday, May 18, 2020. New policies will require all staff and legislators to wear masks in chambers. (Peter Segall / Juneau Empire File)
Polar Bear Dip participants make a mad dash Wednesday, Jan. 1, 2020, into the cold water at Auke Bay Recreation Area. This year’s dip is cancelled due to pandemic concerns. (Ben Hohenstatt / Juneau Empire File)

No polar bears in Juneau: Dip canceled for pandemic

The 30-year-tradition is taking a pause for safety.

Polar Bear Dip participants make a mad dash Wednesday, Jan. 1, 2020, into the cold water at Auke Bay Recreation Area. This year’s dip is cancelled due to pandemic concerns. (Ben Hohenstatt / Juneau Empire File)
Arsenio “Pastor” Credo receives the Moderna coronavirus vaccine from nurse Courtney Taber at the Southeast Alaska Regional Health Consortium’s Ethel Lund Medical Center on Dec. 24, 2020. He’s one of the first non-healthcare professionals to be vaccinated. (Michael S. Lockett / Juneau Empire)
Arsenio “Pastor” Credo receives the Moderna coronavirus vaccine from nurse Courtney Taber at the Southeast Alaska Regional Health Consortium’s Ethel Lund Medical Center on Dec. 24, 2020. He’s one of the first non-healthcare professionals to be vaccinated. (Michael S. Lockett / Juneau Empire)
(Courtesy photo / Alaska Department of Corrections)

State reports 5th inmate COVID-19 death

The department did not identify the man.

(Courtesy photo / Alaska Department of Corrections)
Courtesy photo / Alaska State Troopers
Alaska State Troopers shop for Juneau families at Fred Meyer on Dec. 21 as part of the Alaska Police Officer Association’s annual “Shop with a Cop” event.

Law enforcement officials spread holiday cheer

Distancing didn’t dampen donations or detract from delight.

Courtesy photo / Alaska State Troopers
Alaska State Troopers shop for Juneau families at Fred Meyer on Dec. 21 as part of the Alaska Police Officer Association’s annual “Shop with a Cop” event.
Photos by Michael S. Lockett / Juneau Empire
Members of the Juneau Education Support Staff union pose for a photo in front of meals being prepared for kids in Juneau as Catherine Pusich, second from right, hands a check from the union to Adrianne Schwartz to clear all money owed for school meals at Thunder Mountain High School on Dec. 21.

Educational support union pays off all school district meal balances

The union donated more than $7,000 to clear the ledgers.

Photos by Michael S. Lockett / Juneau Empire
Members of the Juneau Education Support Staff union pose for a photo in front of meals being prepared for kids in Juneau as Catherine Pusich, second from right, hands a check from the union to Adrianne Schwartz to clear all money owed for school meals at Thunder Mountain High School on Dec. 21.
U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Polar Star (WAGB-10) transits the waters of Puget Sound near Seattle on Dec. 4, 2020. The crew is deploying on rare wintertime mission to the Arctic Circle. (U.S. Coast Guard / Petty Officer Steve Strohmaier)

Coast Guard needs more focus on Alaska bases and ships, Sullivan says

Recent Russian exercises and America’s sole functional icebreaker are all cause for concern, the senator opined.

U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Polar Star (WAGB-10) transits the waters of Puget Sound near Seattle on Dec. 4, 2020. The crew is deploying on rare wintertime mission to the Arctic Circle. (U.S. Coast Guard / Petty Officer Steve Strohmaier)
A view of the White House, Tuesday, Dec. 22, 2020, in Washington. (AP Photo / Andrew Harnik)

Sullivan announces intent to override Trump’s defense budget veto

The bill to provide Americans with $600 is also in danger of a Trump veto.

A view of the White House, Tuesday, Dec. 22, 2020, in Washington. (AP Photo / Andrew Harnik)
‘Goodnight, Texas,’ shown above, recently released a new single, “Hypothermic,” centered around the vastness of Alaska. We sat down and talked with them about geography, Alaska, and creating albums during a pandemic. (Courtesy Photo / Brittany Powers)

A long road north: Goodnight, Texas talks new Alaska-focused single

A chilly new single about running from the law invokes the Last Frontier.

‘Goodnight, Texas,’ shown above, recently released a new single, “Hypothermic,” centered around the vastness of Alaska. We sat down and talked with them about geography, Alaska, and creating albums during a pandemic. (Courtesy Photo / Brittany Powers)
A lawsuit against the Trump Administration for removing protections on the Tongass National Forest, seen here on Monday, Dec. 9, 2019, was filed in U.S. District Court on Dec. 23, 2020. (Michael Penn / Juneau Empire File)

Coalition files lawsuit against Trump Administration over Roadless Repeal

The lawsuit, formed with 21 plaintiffs, was filed in U.S. District court Wednesday.

A lawsuit against the Trump Administration for removing protections on the Tongass National Forest, seen here on Monday, Dec. 9, 2019, was filed in U.S. District Court on Dec. 23, 2020. (Michael Penn / Juneau Empire File)