On Friday, March 26, Kurt Brodersen passed away at University of Washington Medical Center after a brief battle with cancer. He was 71 years old.
Little is known about his early years. He was born March 26, 1950 and graduated from Juneau Douglas High School class of 1967.
Kurt fished commercially for shrimp and salmon aboard his boat Irony (formerly known as Aquarius). He lived on his boat year round providing him easy access to all of Southeast Alaska; many who encountered him on the grounds considered him a courteous gentleman. Kurt was our Union Bay MacGyver; he could fix anything directly from his tool box or machine a part and his labor was always free, delivered with a smile.
Kurt might not have considered himself adventurous but he sure found himself in some perilous situations. In the winter of 2010 he was marooned on Duke Island for two weeks, surviving by rolling up in a tarp he’d salvaged and seeking shelter under a tree. Then just this past November he was rescued by Coast Guard helicopter crew who braved tough conditions to pluck him from the hatch cover of his boat, following its sinking in Union Bay hours earlier. As resilient as he was, he was unable to overcome the cancer that took his life.
Kurt’s ‘family’ consisted of the close friends and neighbors of Union Bay. Steve McDermott and Brad Johnson whom passed before him and their spouses, Tess Mano and Debbie Johnson hold him in their hearts, as do forever neighbors Rory and Marion Bifoss, and Will Snyder of Wrangell. He will also be remembered by close friends in Meyers Chuck and Wrangell. It’s easy to picture him now ardently discussing politics with Steve and Brad, often playing devil’s advocate just to encourage strong debate.
At his request there will be no service. Kurt will be loved and missed by all who knew him. Rest in Peace friend.