Machelle Haynes

  • "As I read the entries, old and new, I am ever reminded of..."
    - Karen Read Dobrzynski
  • "I miss you - I suppose you are laughing with Teri and..."
  • "I miss you and your contagious laugh my dear friend. Hope..."
  • "I think of Claudin & sibs this time of the year as fishing..."
  • "Thinking about you and I miss you. Hugs and Love from me..."
    - Mary

Our mighty Machelle Violet Haynes of Chisik Island has passed. On Saturday February

22, 2014, at ANMC she succumbed to cancer's kindest, renal failure. Our silver lining is the time we had to say our goodbyes, although five years is not nearly enough. She had a total of 55.

Machelle was bom December 31, 1958, and was raised in Anchorage. She made Chisik Island her primary residence and lived her life fully in Alaska. She was in part an indigenous Alaskan, Tlingit, and pursued her interest in that ancestry through family,

writings and studies of historical legal happenings. She knew her rights.

Machelle is known for her bold strength and she was brave like her mom. She fished on days others would not. She ran all aspects of her commercial fishing gill net sites, all while defending a claim on land that will remain in her family and is a distinct part of her legacy.

She was a pilot like her dad. She flew a Cherokee 6 with balloon tires for beach landings. She kayaked and skied. She hunted, skinned and canned. She beaded, sewed leather, made drums and even did taxidermy (once). Mostly she welcomed all in for coffee and allowed anyone to be themselves, and you dang well better let her be her too.

Machelle is also known for her successful decision to spend the last thirty years of her life in sobriety. I feel that she furthered this integrity by helping to raise her niece and by providing foster care to others as well as creating a safe space for the neighbor kids to congregate.

Shell had an enthusiasm for so many things, we're sifting through them now and what an amazing joy, to see the way she saw value in the ordinary. So many treasures and unsent cards that we will forward. What a sweetheart we experience as we read her reflections, always exploring herself and herself in relation to others, trying for a betterment.

We love yon Shell and it will always be so.

Memorial: March 8, l p.m., Alaska Center For Spiritual Living, 929 E 81st, Anchorage. She leaves behind her siblings, Mary McDaniel, Ramona Morgan, Oscar "Sonny" Haynes, Claudin Haynes, Marina Haynes; and many nieces and nephews.

Published in Anchorage Daily News from Mar. 1 to Mar. 5, 2014