Lillian H. Olin

Lillian Harriet Pitka Olin, born Nov. 25, 1924, to Tassianna Big Jim Pitka and Richard Pitka of the Dolby River died at her home in Galena on Jan. 13, 2010. Her beloved daughters, Cindy Olin and Eva Olin Sensmeier, were with her at the time of her death.

Lillian will be buried in Ruby on Jan. 18, 2010.

Lillian lived in Galena for many years after moving from Ruby to Fairbanks and then to Galena. She started her lifelong passion and career at the University of Alaska Fairbanks at the Commons, Galena Air Force Base and then the Galena School District as the bilingual teacher.

Though she retired from the Galena School District, she still taught anyone who was willing to learn the Athabascan language and culture in her home. She taught sewing the traditional way. She had many students who are now parents and grand-parents. She will be remembered as "Grandma O." Lillian was an active member of the St. John Berchman's Catholic Church as a eucharistic minister.

Lillian is survived by her sister Nora Kangas and family of Ruby, and Franklin Pitka and Aida Frank of Galena; sister-in-law Lorraine Honea and family; Annie and Don Honea Jr. and family; Amy and Pap Tarver and family; Margie and Joe Juckett and family; brother-in-law James and Maudry Honea and family from Galena; and her surviving children, Christine and Daniel Smith and their children and grandchildren from Pavo, Ga., and Freda and PJ Williams and children from Fairbanks; Dee Olin and her children and grandchildren from Anaktuvuk Pass; Amy and Mick VanHatten and children and grandchildren from Fairbanks;

Eva and Ray Sensmeier and children and grandchildren from Yakutat; Fred and Betty Jean Olin and children from Anchorage; Cindy Olin and children from Galena; Mary Olin and children and grandchild from Anchorage; Rick Olin and children from Fairbanks; Valerie and children and grandchildren from Nenana; Larry Olin from Galena; Conrad and Jen Olin and children and grandchildren from Winslow, Maine; she has many grandchildren and great-grandchildren and all her family and friends of Galena, Ruby, Huslia, Hughes, Koyukuk, Nulato and Tanana.

She was preceded in death by Freddie Richard Olin II; son, Paul G. Olin; parents, Tassianna and Richard Pitka; and brothers, Harry Pitka and Timothy Pitka of Ruby.



Published by Daily News-Miner on Jan. 19, 2010.
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10 Entries
To the Family of Grandma Olin,
Lina and I are keeping you in our prayers to help ease your grief. We are sorry we could not attend services in Ruby. When I arrived in Fbks. in July of 1970 from Calif. one of the first places we went was to Birch Park to meet Mickey's Aunt Lillian. She was not home but in Galena preparing to move her family there. When Lillian had her accident in Galena, she stayed in our home on Badger Road while she healed. My mother was fighting cancer and was very sick so it was very comforting for me to be able to care for her. I was the one who gained so much by having her in my home. She taught me to sew calf-skin mukluks, use a treadle sewing machine and re-cover used parkas with new corduroy for my children. It was an adventure to go to "Sally Anns" to find treasures. She also taught me to cook some native foods. A fond memory is my 3yr old daughter chewing on barbequed beaver ribs. She was the ultimate teacher and will always remain in our hearts. She also gave my daughters their first bibles, prayer books and Athabascan sewing kits. So many loving and fond memories from one person~ what an amazing example for all of us to aspire to!!
Charlene Allen
January 31, 2010
To the family of Lillian,
I was very fortunate to have worked beside your Mom back in the good old days on base. She most certainly was a woman of greatness.
Kathy Walker Chase
January 26, 2010
Was sorry to hear of Lillians passing. Keeping the family in my prayers. God Bless!! Bernice Gurtler Ayscue
Bernice Ayscue
January 24, 2010
I am so sorry to hear of your loss. I can still picture Lillian, Florance and Paldine sitting around our dining room table, visiting with my mom when I was young. My thoughts and prayers are with you.
Sharon Alford Nall
January 24, 2010
My prayers and thoughts are with the Olin family, she was a great woman and will be missed.
Denise Callahan
January 22, 2010
I still remember Lillian and her cordiality to me. I pray for your family. God bless you.
Fr. Andrew Maslanka
January 22, 2010
May you rest in peace in the arms of our dear Lord. Your were a wonderful person who will be remembered for years to come. Your kindness, generosity and willing to teach anyone who wants to learn will stay with all you've touch throuhout your life. Our prayers go out to your family and friends.
January 20, 2010
May you rest in peace in the arms of our dear Lord. Your were a wonderful person who will be remembered for years to come. Your kindness, generosity and willing to teach anyone who wants to learn will stay with all you've touch throuhout your life. Our prayers go out to your family and friends.
Howard and Elma Gillett
January 20, 2010
May you rest in peace Lillian, prayers to the family. Eileen Pitka
January 20, 2010
You all are in our thoughts and prayers. From the Edwin /Walker family in Tanana
January 19, 2010
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