Sgt. Jonathon M. Hunter: Motorcade arrives at funeral home

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The motorcade for U.S. Army Sgt. Jonathon Michael Hunter arrives at Barkes Weaver & Glick Funeral Home in Columbus, Ind., Tuesday, August 22, 2017. The Indiana soldier was only 32 days into his Afghanistan deployment when he and another American service member were killed in a suicide bomber attack. Hunter is a Columbus East graduate.

Houston’s Casket Arrives at Church for Funeral

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The hearse carrying the body of Whitney Houston arrives at New Hope Baptist Church in Newark, N.J. for the singer’s funeral. (Feb. 18)

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New Fisk organ arrives at Harvard’s Memorial Church

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A C.B. Fisk organ, Opus 139, will be unveiled Easter Sunday in Harvard’s Memorial Church. The new 16-ton instrument is the result of a campaign by the late Rev. Peter J. Gomes, and the work of a small but talented group of artisans.

Vice President Mike Pence arrives at the Corpus Christi International Airport

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Vice President Mike Pence arrived at the Corpus Christi International Airport Thursday morning and is expected to visit Rockport to assess the damage left behind by Hurricane Harvey.

Body of the Rev. Clementa Pinckney arrives at St. John A.M.E. Church

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The Rev. Clementa Pinckney’s body arrives at St. John A.M.E. Church in Ridgeland, South Carolina on June 25, 2015. Hundreds of mourners look on, awaiting their chance to pay final respects to the beloved former state senator and pastor of Charleston’s Emanuel A.M.E. Church.

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President Trump arrives in Salt Lake City, Utah Dec 4, 2017 Salt Lake City International Airport

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President Trump arrives in Salt Lake City, Utah. Dec 4, 2017. Salt Lake City International Airport.

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Laurel Bill on Alaska Story Time with Aunt Phil, Bishop Rowe arrives in Alaska

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On this episode of Alaska Story Time with Aunt Phil, author/historian Laurel Downing Bill shares the story of Bishop Peter Trimble Rowe who traveled Alaska establishing Episcopal churches and preaching to prospectors and Alaska Natives for decades.

Bishop Rowe’s influence still is seen in beautiful Episcopal churches that dot Alaska’s landscape. Following his consecration as the first Episcopal bishop of Alaska, he headed north and traveled extensively preaching to both Alaska Natives and gold rush miners. He found Alaska to be quite a wild country. In fact when he visited Circle City that year, he described it as a “row of saloons, gambling houses and dance halls.”

But Rowe was accustomed to traveling in the wilderness as he had served as a missionary in Canada prior to becoming Bishop of Alaska. He once told a reporter that he dug his bed out of the snow in winter and slept on branches and leaves in the summer. Rowe established 16 missions in five years in Canada and wanted to do the same in Alaska.

He arrived in the Great Land via the Chilkoot Trail and soon established missions like Holy Trinity Church in Juneau, St. Peter’s by the Sea in Sitka and St. Phillip’s in Wrangell. When he arrived in Skagway, he saw a great need for a hospital. He was there during the massive influx of gold seekers to the Klondike and found people suffering from spinal meningitis, influenza, frostbite and bronchitis.

He wrote a letter to his superiors stating that the townspeople had turned over the need for medical care to him and he had assumed responsibility of a log building. In April 1898 it became the Bishop Rowe Hospital and he helped get it stocked with beds, medicines and a few doctors. Rowe also established hospitals in Wrangell, Ketchikan, Ft. Yukon, Rampart and Iditarod. He also opened boarding schools for orphaned Native children at Nenana, Tanana, Ft. Yukon, Anvik and Tanacross.

In Cordova, Rowe dedicated St. George Mission, also known as the Red Dragon, in July 1908. It was a reading room complete with a piano and pool table that was open seven days a week as an alternative to the 26 saloons that lined the main street of Cordova during the building of the Copper River Railroad. It featured boxing matches and dances, too. But on Sundays, an alter and chairs were placed in the center of the building for church services.

Rowe served the people of Alaska until his death in 1942. Episcopal churches across Alaska stand in testimony to his dedication to help those who call Alaska home.

This segment aired on CBS Anchorage affiliate KTVA Channel 11 Daybreak on Nov. 30, 2015.

Alaska history