The Seward Phoenix Log - News of the Eastern Kenai Peninsula since 1966

By Wolfgang Kurtz
LOG Editor 

Seward comes together for 50th earthquake anniversary


Wolfgang Kurtz | The Seward Phoenix LOG

Patricia Linville, Seward Community Library Museum director, welcomed an overflow crowd to the library's community room Thursday for a commemoration and retrospective of the 1964 Alaska Earthquake that affected so many Seward families and businesses, experiences that echo down to this day. Across the hall, in the museum, browsers took advantage of free admission and the increasingly refined presentations in exhibits throughout.

The event kicked off with a short movie by local filmmaker Chris Peck, which combined crayon drawings by school children at the time of the earthquake with narration and evocative sound effects. The audience was transported through earthquake scenes by the children's artwork and written comments. There were even a few of those former students in the audience.

The Seward Community Choir, conducted by quake survivor Sue McClure, performed a rousing rendition of the Alaska Flag Song. Following the choir and short film, Linville introduced Mike Brittain who addressed the capacity audience along with a panel of Seward ladies including Dorothy Urbach, Bev Dunham and Margaret Anderson. All kept the rapt attention of an audience of all ages.

Wolfgang Kurtz | The Seward Phoenix LOG

Linville and Brittain were succeeded by Dan Seavey who managed to elicit comments and earthquake tales from shrinking violets such as Doug McRae. However some in the crowd were more difficult to persuade including Linda McSwain who successfully resisted Seavey's exhortations. Seavey, brandishing a grade book from 1964, even resorted to quoting some grades of former pupils. More than a few hands were raised when Seavey asked for a showing from those present when the earthquake struck.


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