The Drabek Award of $2,000 will be awarded annually to one student majoring in education, arts, and/or cultural studies with the highest combined application and GPA score. The student who qualifies will be identified by KEF and notified individually if they are eligible. No additional application is necessary.
Magnel “Maggie” E. Drabek was born in Afognak village in 1926 to Olga (daughter of Evdokia (Nekrasoff) and Peter Paul Naumoff of Afognak) and Louie Larsen (a fisherman and merchant marine originally from Alesund, Norway). Maggie was known for her fortitude, practical leadership, diplomacy, humor and creativity.
In 1947 she married Henry “Hank” Alvin Drabek of Springville, N.Y., after they met in Seattle, Wash., while Hank was decommissioning the aircraft carrier Bonhomme Richard after World War II. Together they raised two sons, Anthony “Tony” John and Alvin Lawrence. Hank was overseas for many years serving in the Navy during the Korean War. Regardless of where they lived, Maggie was always involved in community activities and recognized for her talents. For example, during their years living on the Coronado Naval Base in Southern California, she won numerous artistic awards for hat designs, publicity posters and costumes.
They returned to live in Kodiak after Hank retired from the Navy. Maggie worked for many years in the Kodiak school system as a cook and later as a teacher’s aide before retiring for health reasons. Prior to her work in Kodiak schools, she served as forelady for several prominent fish processors. Maggie’s family remembers when the 1964 earthquake and tsunami struck, the only household item she grabbed before heading for high ground was her “Big Ben” alarm clock so she wouldn’t be late for work the next morning. Ironically, while she had her alarm clock, the cannery she worked at had been washed away in the night, along with her house and all the family’s belongings.
When Maggie was a young, single woman living in Washington, she gave birth to a son who she was unable to care for at the time. Maggie made the difficult decision to give him up for adoption. Her son, Roger McCracken, now lives in Bellevue, Wash., and was reunited with his two brothers in 1998 after Tony’s search for Roger proved fruitful.
Maggie passed away in 1990. The memory of her as a loving mother, wife, friend, sister, aunt and daughter, as well as her passion for education and Alutiiq culture, lives on.