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Tuesday, January 22, 2019
HomeThe SocialLee Jordan, Chugiak-Eagle River Star founder, passes

Lee Jordan, Chugiak-Eagle River Star founder, passes

A STORIED LIFE ENDED THREE DAYS BEFORE STATEHOOD ANNIVERSARY

Alaska journalist Lee Brookins Jordan died suddenly Dec. 31, 2018. He was 88 years old.

Born in Birmingham, Ala. on Sept. 22, 1930, he joined the U.S. Army in 1948 and 12 times asked to be stationed in a warm location — anywhere but Alaska — only to find himself stationed in Whittier, Alaska in January.

He made Alaska home, calling Eagle River the “Center of the Universe.”  After retiring from the military, he worked at the Anchorage Times and became part of history by creating the “WE’RE IN”  headline that is now an icon of Alaska Statehood.

Survivors include his sister, Nelda, wife Barbara and their four children, Stephan, Sonja, Sherri and Sven, nine grandchildren, six great-grandchildren and an extended family in Alabama.

Lee founded the Chugiak-Eagle River Star on Jan. 14, 1971. The weekly newspaper soon became a hub for local businesses and continues today, although he sold the paper in 2000.

He also published the Cook Inlet Sports Review, the Suburbanite, and the Kachemak Compass (based in Homer).

He was a member of the Eagle River Presbyterian Church, where he enjoyed singing in the choir.

Jordan authored three books. “Starlight memories” is a collection of his favorite columns that he wrote for more than 50 years, and “Confessions of a Reluctant Alaskan” is a memoir.

His most recent book, published in 2017, is “Stampede: Saints, Successes, Suckers & Scoundrels of the Yukon Gold Rush,”  a collection of vivid tales about the characters of the gold rush. It has been featured as a “Book of the Week,” in Must Read Alaska’s Monday newsletter and the book is available through Amazon.

Services for family and church members will be held on Thursday, Jan. 17 at 7 pm in the Eagle River Presbyterian Church, 12836 Old Glenn Highway, Eagle River, Alaska.

A celebration of life will be held for the public at the Bartlett High School Auditorium on Saturday, Jan. 19 at 6 pm.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Chinooks Booster Club, cerchinooks.com and to the KNIK Little League, by contacting info@kniklittleleague.com.

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Written by

Suzanne Downing had careers in business and journalism before serving as the Director of Faith and Community-based Initiatives for Florida Gov. Jeb Bush and returning to Alaska to serve as speechwriter for Gov. Sean Parnell. Born on the Oregon coast, she moved to Alaska in 1969.

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  • Lee was simply a great inspiring man. I’ll miss our long conversations about the history of Alaska especially the Eagle River/Chugiak area.

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