Joel Mathis, photo courtesy Skagway Air Service

Jeol Mathis
1962-2002
Services for Joel Mathis of Skagway will be held today, Jan. 25, from 5 to 6 p.m. at the Elks Lodge.
Mathis, 39, died Jan. 15, 2002 in a plane crash near Skagway. Joel was doing what he loved – he was on his way to pick up two passengers in Haines, Alaska, when his plane went down.
Joel was born on June 6, 1962. He was raised in New Mexico and had a dream about flying since he was nine years old, his mother said.
Joel came to Alaska in the 1990s and lived in Juneau for about seven years, working for Delta Western and Reliable Transfer. He dreamed of flying, his former employer told the Juneau Empire, and when the trucking job became seasonal, Joel used the time off to earn flight hours by flying banners off the coast of North and South Carolina.
In the summer of 2000, Joel started with Skagway Air Service, his first scheduled air carrier. He then went to work for Haines Air for the winter. After that airline closed its doors last spring, Joel was welcomed back to Skagway Air, initially flying out of Juneau. He was one of three pilots retained by the local carrier this winter, and moved up to Skagway, living above the hardware store.
Joel was remembered by fellow employees as a friendly guy with a Western look – cowboy boots and shirt – and a great sense of humor. He enjoyed sitting on a bench outside the office on Broadway and striking up conversations with tourists.
“He was just a real good company family member,” said Skagway Air vice president and fellow pilot Mike O’Daniel. “He wasn’t just an employee. He was part of the company family.”
Joel is survived by his mother and father, Vic and Sue Mathis; his brother Vernon Mathis, wife Tina Mathis, their children, Travis Mathis, Matthew Lovato and Dallas Wallace; his sister Shelly Mathis and Max, all of Albuquerque, New Mexico.
In lieu of flowers, the family request donations be made to the people who risked their lives to recover his body: Skagway Volunteer Search and Rescue.
Joel out-flew his Angels.
– submitted by the family, with contributions by Mike O’Daniel, Jeff Brady and Juneau Empire.

Trevor Kern (center) with friends and co-workers Craig Cline and Casey Woodruff . Photo courtesy Red Onion Saloon

Trevor Kern
1977-2002

Trevor Kern passed away Jan. 18, 2002 from results of a swimming accident in St. Thomas Virgin Island. The family was able to fly Trevor home and he died at St. Joseph’s Hospital, the same hospital where he was born.
In his short 25 years, Trevor traveled extensively, and touched many lives. His radiant smile and sense of humor were contagious and his zest for life unmatched.
A Memorial Service was held Monday at St. Jerome’s Catholic Church in Maplewood, Minn. Another will be held in Lincoln, Neb., and at a later date this Spring in Skagway. Because Trevor was loved by so many, his ashes will be scattered at each location.
Friends in Skagway gathered together at the Eagles Hall last Saturday night to remember him. Trevor worked last summer as a bartender at the Red Onion Saloon.
Trevor is in Heaven in the arms of his grandparents, Ray & Grace Moran. He will be sadly missed by parents, Melissa & Bob; step-mother, Linda; and sister, Jacy of Lincoln, Neb. Other family members include grandparents, Don and Sis Kern; and Minnie and Pat McMonigal; many loving aunts, uncles, and cousins; and his extended family in Skagway, and special friend, Andi. In addition to his family, Trevor will be missed by all who knew him. Memorials can be sent in care of Linda Swanberg, 1380 Sigfrid St., Eagan MN 55122 or to the Cremation Society, (612) 825-2435.
– Submitted by the Kern Family