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The sad news out of Hooper Bay is a reminder that suicide continues to be a serious issue in Alaska.

Ketchikan is blessed with dedicated firefighters who work with the Ketchikan Fire Department, North Tongass Volunteer Fire Department and the South Tongass Volunteer Fire Department.

Maria Magdalena Angeles, 75, died Oct. 8, 2015, in the Philippines.
Gerald Robin Dundas, 63, died Oct. 4, 2015, in Metlakatla.
George Edgar Lybrand died Oct. 4, 2015, in Ketchikan.
Eileen Norma Smith-Harmon, 72, died Oct. 5, 2015, in Klawock.
Skip the trip

Stay home.

Save the expense of a trip to Alaska.

The Westboro Baptist Church in Topeka, Kan., says it's sending protesters to the Alaska Native Heritage Center on June 1.

Church members are offended by what they call “idols” at the center. Beyond that, they just don't seem to like Alaska's Native cultures very much.

But it takes a willful ignorance to see idols in artifacts, or to automatically see unholiness in another culture.

Possessing high regard for the artifacts at the Alaska Native Heritage Center is not idolatry. Explaining Alaska's Native cultures is no sin.

We suggest that the Kansas church members stay home and find constructive ways to improve their own communities.

Alaska and Alaskans can take care of Alaska and Alaskans.