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November 14, 2016 ANCHORAGE – Governor Bill Walker today ordered all Alaska State flags be lowered in honor of former Alaska State Representative Joe Ryan, who passed away in Fairbanks on November 7th at the age of 80. Representative Ryan served in the 20th Alaska State Legislature, from 1997-1998.
“Representative Ryan was a passionate advocate for our state. His love of the outdoors and commitment to public service truly embody what it means to be Alaskan,” Governor Walker said. “Lt. Governor Byron Mallott and I extend our sincerest condolences to the Ryan Family, and those across the state who knew and admired Representative Ryan.”
Born in Cleveland Ohio, Representative Joe Ryan enlisted in the United States Air Force, and eventually became a mechanic foreman on the Trans-Alaska Pipeline. He was a passenger and freight transfer pilot for 18 years, and later served on the Fairbanks North Star Borough Assembly. He served as a legislative aide for four years prior to being elected to represent District 21 in 1996. Representative Ryan enjoyed hunting, fishing, photography, coaching football, and studying naval history and economics, among other things. He is survived by his two siblings, five children, and nine grandchildren.
Governor Walker ordered all Alaska flags to be lowered immediately in honor of the late Representative Ryan. Flags should return to full-staff at sunset on Saturday, November 19, 2016.