The US Fish and Wildlife service opened the Kuskokwim for fishing for a 2nd time. This time the weather was calm, hot and humid. Though tired and weary from his own fishing CO Archie Andrew took to the water to give back to the community with his auspicious outside work crew. Fishing on its own is physically draining but mentally it is refreshing to the soul knowing that we are providing for ourselves and our people.
This time they had some precious cargo with them, our very own Superintendent L. Dean Marshall, who despite his busy schedule took time from his work to join the men in working and giving back to the community.
The coho (silver) salmon was divided up and well received by recipients and residents of the Lulu Heron Assisted living center in Bethel which houses elders in varying degrees of disability who live only 50-75 miles from family, but in the Y-K Delta it might as well be a life time away, with expensive airfare tickets and limited income from either disability or retirement checks that they receive they can hardly afford to fly back home. The gift of salmon to these elders is priceless to have a taste of their food, none of the parts went to waste, every part of the fish were taken by the elders, including the heads and eggs.
Nurse Laura Denny is one of the outstanding medical professionals working at the Yukon Kuskokwim Correctional Center in Bethel, Alaska. She has been working for the Alaska Department of Corrections since September 2015.
Nurse Denny moved to Alaska from Arizona in May 2014. She and her husband came to Alaska from Arizona, where she worked in a busy 50-bed telemetry unit in a local hospital. Prior to becoming a nurse, Laura worked as a Medical Assistant in a pediatric private practice as well as a postpartum unit in an Arizona hospital.
Nurse Denny started working in Corrections at the 1500-bed Arizona State Prison Complex in Winslow, Arizona. She often worked alone, so she had to learn how to handle a wide range of medical issues with little assistance. As she describes it, “she had to learn quickly in a sink or swim environment!”
Staff describes Nurse Denny as being very organized and efficient. They are especially appreciative of her ability to processes the medical screenings quickly, making room for incoming remands. Other comments include the following: “That woman there is good at everything; Abstracts, med call, you name it, she gets it done. She is not allowed to leave shift 3 and 4 rotation. We appreciate everything you do. Thank you Nurse Denny!”
The female inmates at the Yukon Kuskokwim Correctional Center crocheted scarves, blankets, hats, handbags, and gloves for donation to the local community. These items were donated to the pre-maternal home to be handed out to new and expecting mothers.
In keeping with the season, staff members Office Assistant Sonya Noes, Office Assistant Kathryn Smithson and Administrative Officer Peggy Nerby-Crow take some time to spruce up the entry way to Yukon-Kuskokwim Correctional Center planting a series of flower boxes.
— Superintendent Dean Marshall
Four YKCC prisoners provided road clean-up service along the 7-miles of highway between City Hall and the Bethel Airport during two days in mid-May. The project was coordinated with the Acting City Manager and the Mayor. The Offender work crew was supervised by Correctional Officer II Jeffrey Shevlin.
On April 30th Yukon-Kuskokwim Correctional Center said goodbye to a wealth of institutional knowledge as the retirement of four staff members was honored. These staff members served the Department well, and their experience will be missed. The staff and many citizens of the Bethel Community wished them happiness and success at a retirement luncheon. Each received plaques from the staff at YKCC and the Alaska Correctional Officers Association. Assistant Superintendent Hoffman served as the Acting Superintendent at YKCC for the past year, and was presented with a special award from the Director’s Office. Deputy Director Lee Sherman came to Bethel to congratulate each of the staff as they transition into civilian life. In addition, Probation Officer II Barbara Ramos was recognized with a letter and a service pin from Governor Parnell, for her 25-years of dedicated state service. The honorees are: Assistant Superintendent James “Bobby” Hoffman (14-years) Retired; CO III Michael Rapoza (24-years) Retired; CO II Carol Peters (30-years) Retired; CO II Beulah Dahlin (16-years) Retired, and PO II Barbara Ramos for 25 years State Service.
— Superintendent Dean Marshall
The female population at YKCC continues to crochet with yarn that is donated from people in Anchorage and the Bethel area. They have made hats, head wraps, and mittens, which were donated to Ayaprun Elitnaurvik, a Yup’ik Immersion school based in Bethel. Part of the second grade class was able to choose the hat or head wrap they liked. They were thankful and asked that more hats be made for the rest of their schoolmates. The women also made blankets, booties, hats, and sweaters for the OB Ward at the Yukon Kuskokwim Regional Hospital. The mothers were very happy to have them. We are always looking for yarn donations! So if you have any yarn you’re willing to donate, please send it to:
Probation Officer Barb Ramos
Yukon Kuskokwim Correctional Center
Bethel, AK 99559
— PO II Barb Ramos
Yukon-Kuskokwim Correctional Center in Bethel has opened a new classroom/programming building for prisoners. The building was largely constructed in-house with labor provided by prisoners and maintenance staff. “We had a lot of inmates working on it for short durations,” said Superintendent James Hoffman. “The shell package was furnished by Spenard Builders out of Anchorage and freighted to Bethel and put together and completed both inside and outside.” The construction work included installing heat and lights. The building has yet to be named formally. Security fencing was provided by Hiland Mountain Correctional Center.
YKCC / DOC participated in annual Career Day events in Bethel, setting up a recruitment booth at the Culture Center. Sgt. Ramos staffed the table and is shown interacting with a local job-seeker.