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Life in Alaska

Remembering Elder, Richard Frank

Tanana Chiefs Conference

Fairbanks, AK - Athabascan Elder Richard Frank passed away last week.  He was born and raised in Old Minto, roughly 60 miles northwest of Fairbanks.  Frank was outspoken about native land claims issues and culture heritage preservation.  After serving in the Army Air Corp during World War Two, he went on to found the Alaska Native Veteran’s Association.  Frank also played a role in establishing the Fairbanks Native Association and he worked closely with the Tanana Chiefs conference.  After leaving his home in Old Minto as a boy, Frank worked for the Alaska Railroad.  He also worked on sternwheelers that traveled the Nenana River.  Later, he served as Chief of the Minto Tribal Council and President of the Minto Village Corporation.  A memorial service will be held in Minto today. He’s survived by his wife Anna , four children and eight grandchildren. He was 85.

KUAC’s Emily Schwing sat down with his daughter, Roxanne, and his granddaughter, Amanda, to talk about who he was.