Annamae Jones Rocker

Annamae Jones Rocker July 1, 1930 – May 31, 2013 Longtime Anchorage resident, Annamae Jones Rocker, passed away at Providence Alaska Medical Center on May 31, 2013, after a short illness. Annamae was born and raised in Grand Junction, CO, the only child of Elsie (Lankford) and Heywood Jones. In 1948, she graduated from Grand Junction High School. After graduating from the University of Colorado, she came to Alaska in the early 1950's to live with her Aunt Willie McCahan who was an elementary school teacher in Anchorage. Annamae's interest in Alaska began with her aunt's tales of the north when she would go back to visit in Colorado. Annamae's first job in Anchorage was working for Chuck West at Westours. She left briefly to work for United Airlines in San Francisco. After a year there, she moved to Fairbanks and again worked for Westours. She returned to Anchorage and worked in the retail travel industry for several years. In 1971, she married Robert Rocker who also worked in the travel industry and was, at one time, Commissioner of the Alaska Department of Transportation. In 1972, she opened All Ways Travel at the corner of 3rd and G Streets in downtown Anchorage. The business remained at the same location for 40 years. Some of Annamae's special interests and talents were organizing international incentive groups for local businesses and group packages to Seattle for Seahawk booster fans. She enjoyed arranging unique, custom adventures for her inbound clients. Annamae was a tireless advocate for Anchorage, generously giving her time and enthusiasm to many community causes and efforts aimed at the development and beautification of the city. She was actively involved in the travel industry and community affairs. Some of her many contributions were acting as president of the Alaska branch of the American Society of Travel Agents, sitting on the Board of Directors for the Anchorage Opera, working as a director for the Anchorage Downtown Partnership, acting as president of the Resource Development Council, being a member of the Alaska Airlines scholarship committee, and actins as president of SKAL (an International Association of Travel Professionals), as well as others. Annamae loved bright colors, dancing, classical music, Asian and African art, people, horses, skiing, and the outdoors. She had a cheerful disposition and an optimistic outlook on life. The word "retirement" was unknown to her and she continued working until just a few days before she died. She was preceded in death by her parents; her husband, Bob, and her beloved Aunt Willie. She is survived her brother-in-law, Alan Rocker. Annamae also leaves many longtime friends - her Alaskan family. According to her wishes, she will be laid to rest alongside her husband in the Anchorage Memorial Park Cemetery.

Published in The Daily Sentinel on Sept. 1, 2013