ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — When tribal elder David Katzeek died in October, Tlingit leaders in Alaska scrambled to find a way to hold a traditional memorial ceremony during a pandemic.
Their task was to balance honoring him with protecting the living from the coronavirus.
The Sealaska Heritage Institute in Juneau has been transforming its in-person programming to virtual events, and figured this was the next step in helping preserve Tlingit culture.
The institute hosted a Zoom memorial gathering and live-streamed it online.
The experience was such a success, it's now the basis for guides being written for others to use technology to conduct ancient rites safely amid the pandemic.