KDLG Header Banner Image
Public Radio for Alaska's Bristol Bay
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
Available On Air Stations

Karl Erik Rawson, June 15, 1965 - July 16, 2021

Courtesy of Lorianne Rawson

"Family was everything to Karl, and his grandchildren were his world." Rawson passed away surrounded by family at Mat-Su Regional Medical Center in Palmer, Alaska. He was 56.

Karl Erik Rawson, age 56, passed away on July 16, 2021, surrounded by family at Mat-Su Regional Medical Center in Palmer, Alaska.

A Funeral was held at St. Juvenaly & His Companion Orthodox Church in Wasilla, Alaska, and he was interred at Hickerson Memorial Cemetery in Homer, Alaska. The Funeral was officiated by Father Timothy Kolb, and pallbearers were: Donald "Dungy" Nielsen , Ralph "Bucko"Angasan Jr., Kiel Rawson, Rolf Rawson, Paul Abruska, Joseph Abruska, Rory Mcleod, Bjorn King and George King III; with honorary pallbearers: JP Ford, Jeff Schroeder, Eddie Clark and Hanna Abruska.

Karl was born on June 15, 1965, at Seattle, Wash., and grew up in the Seattle and Bellevue area. As a youngster he ran Rawson Commercial Fishing boats across Lake Washington for his dad, Ron Rawson, for shipment to commercial fishermen in Bristol Bay. He resided in Fall Brook, Calif., until 2001, when me moved to South Naknek, Alaska. Karl married Lorianne Nielsen on April 19, 2002, in South Naknek, and shared his time between South Naknek and Wasilla. He graduated from the Alaska State Trooper Academy in Sitka, Alaska, in 2003.

Karl worked from 2002 until his passing at the Native Village of South Naknek, where he was the former VPSO. He was the Bristol Bay Economic Develop Corp. liaison, and Facilities and Operations Manager. He was also a former Bristol Bay commercial fisherman and Port Engineer for Peter Pan Seafoods in Naknek, and former avocado farmer in Fall Brook.

Karl was a member of the Russian Orthodox Church of Alaska. He always ensured South Naknek villagers had their winter heating fuel. Karl enjoyed fishing, camping, boating, welding and cooking holiday meals for family - his highlight was pumpkin night for Halloween and gingerbread night for Christmas with his grandchildren.

His family wrote, "Family was everything to Karl, and his grandchildren were his world. He loved his dogs so much they were like his children."

Karl is survived by wife, Lorianne Rawson; children, Kiel Rawson of Post Falls, Idaho, Paul Abruska, Joseph Abruska (Hanna) and Lorianne Zimin (Nickolas); grandchildren, Emily, Lyra, Soren, Maple, Pepper, Aurelia, Tilden, Evie, Poppy and Tucker, all of Wasilla; sisters, Kari Rawson of Wasilla and Rebecca Rawson (Bob Byrd) of Richland, Wash.; brother, Rolf (Gina) Rawson of Temecula, Calif.; in-laws, Donald and Mary Jane Nielsen of South Naknek; and brother-in-law, Donald "Dungy" Nielsen II (Linda) of Philomath, Ore.

He was preceded in passing by father, Ron Rawson; mother, Gloria Rawson Sweet; and sister-in-law, Eva Nielsen-King.

Bristol Bay Obituaries is a place for people to remember family members and loved ones who have died. Email submissions and photos to obituary@kdlg.org.