Alaska Trappers Mourn Death of Dean Wilson

Dan Bross, KUAC – Fairbanks

Trappers are mourning the loss of Dean Wilson Senior of Kenny Lake.  The master trapper and fur buyer, passed away earlier this week following a long illness.  He was 69-years-old.

Wilson grew up in the village of Northway, learned to trap as a child, and spent his life working in the field, and running a seasonal fur buying operation in Fairbanks.  Alaska Trappers Association president Randy Zarnke says Wilson was known as the patriarch of Alaska trapping and did a lot to support the traditional activity, especially with kids.

Zarnke says Wilson’s roots were in traditional trapping, but he embraced evolution of the craft.

Another longtime friend and fellow trapper Pete Buist of Fairbanks says Wilson was always willing to share his knowledge.

Buist says Wilson will be remembered for his outgoing personality and sense of humor. Buist recounts a time when Wilson asked him to help promote a fur contest.

The Alaska Trappers Association shared memories of Dean Wilson Sr. at its monthly meeting his week in Fairbanks.  Wilson’s funeral is scheduled for Sunday at the Kenny Lake School.

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