Services are pending for former Juneau legislator Elton Engstrom, Jr., who has died at the age of 78.
Engstrom represented Juneau as a Republican in the legislature from 1965 to 1971.
Politics were in his blood, so to speak, as both his mother and father, Thelma and Elton Engstrom, Sr., were elected to the Alaska Territorial Legislature. In the early 1960s, Engstrom, Sr. served in the new state’s senate.
The younger Engstrom was a lawyer who served from 1965 to 1967 in the Alaska State House, and from 1967 to 1971 in the State Senate.
The state was just recovering from the 1964 earthquake that struck Southcentral. Then in 1967, it was the Fairbanks flood. But it was also a heady time with the discovery of oil in Prudhoe Bay.
Engstrom’s daughter Cathy Munoz has followed in her father’s footsteps and represents Juneau in the Alaska State House. Her office writes that as a youth Engstrom worked with his father, a fish buyer at Juneau Cold Storage, then went into the business and bought fish until 1985.
Engstrom also managed property that he owned, collected books and was an avid writer and known for his columns in the Juneau Empire. He and his son Allan authored Alexander Baranov and a Pacific Empire, a book about the first governor of the Russian-America Company.
Elton Engstrom, Jr. died Wednesday at his Juneau home on Chicken Ridge. He is survived by his wife Sally, his brother Allan, sons Elton and Allan, daughter Cathy Engstrom Muñoz, son-in-law Juan Muñoz, and grandchildren Mercedes and Matthew Muñoz and Katya and Aliosha Engstrom.