Leo Apapapyoc Kunnuk Jr.
Lifelong Alaska resident, Mr. Leo Apapapyoc Kunnuk, Jr., passed away on June 21, 2017 at the age of 85.
Born in King Island on October 22, 1931, Leo moved to Nome at the age of 18 and lived there until he met his former wife, Olga Kunnuk in Seward during the TB epidemic, eventually getting married and having eight children. Leo also served for many years in the Alaska National Guard upon turning 18.
Leo was a man of many talents. In order to provide for his family, he was a commercial fisherman out of Seward for many years as well as being a Longshoreman. He later moved to Nome for a brief time and worked at the Alaska Gold Company and Alaska Commercial Company, eventually returning to Seward where he retired from the Seward General Hospital after many years as a maintenance technician.
Leo was not only an avid fisherman, but he was also a master ivory carver, and teacher, using that as a way to instill his ways of life and teach the young and adults how to Eskimo dance and drum. Leo fished every Seward Salmon Derby until he was no longer able to. The community expresses a great loss of an Elder that enjoyed teaching the young. His children will miss everything about him, and will ensure Leo’s legacy continues, never to be forgotten.
He was preceded in death by his parents Charles and Agnes Kunnuk; his siblings Paul, Peter, Charles, and Timothy; former spouse Olga Kunnuk; children Roy, Herbert and Leo Kunnuk III, who passed on next to his father.
Leo is survived by his children Leona Mayac of Nome, Debbie Rook of Seward, Irene Pipkin of Soldotna, Steven Kunnuk of Seward; Siblings: Julie, Marie Theresa, Adrianne, Joseph, Dominic, and William; 12 grandchildren, 30 great grandchildren, and one great-great grandchild.
Services took place on Saturday, July 8, 2017 at 2:00 p.m. at Sacred Heart Catholic Church in Seward, officiated by Father Richard Tero. A potluck followed after the service, and King Island dancers and drummers performed a grand exit for Leo.