Governor Dunleavy meets with Wrangell residents after fatal landslide

On Friday, Governor Mike Dunleavy met with residents and community leaders in Wrangell following Monday night’s fatal landslide. (Photo courtesy of the Governor’s office.)

Wrangell, Alaska (KINY) – On Friday, Governor Mike Dunleavy met with residents and community leaders in Wrangell following Monday night’s fatal landslide.

Earlier Friday, the Department of Public Safety identified three Alaskans who remained missing: 65-year-old Otto Florschutz, 12-year-old Derek Heller, and 11-year-old Kara Heller.

Three Alaskans located deceased during the search were identified as 44-year-old Timothy Heller, 36-year-old Beth Heller, and 16-year-old Mara Heller. One adult was located alive and in good condition on Tuesday.

“My heart goes out to the Florschutz and Heller families. Wrangell is a tight-knit town and this is a trying time for everyone here. I will continue praying for Wrangell and for the Florschutz and Heller’s families and loved ones. Witnessing the magnitude of the landslide in person is a humbling experience. It is truly a miracle that one person was rescued and is in good condition,” said Alaska Governor Mike Dunleavy. “This week, dozens of Alaskans have sacrificed spending Thanksgiving with their families to join the search and rescue efforts, to bring comfort and to support the families affected by this tragedy. I’m grateful for each person who has stepped up to help their fellow Alaskans.”

Governor Dunleavy issued a state disaster declaration for the landslide on Tuesday and has pledged to provide Wrangell with all of the state’s available resources to respond to the disaster.

On Friday, the Governor was joined by Department of Military and Veterans Affairs Commissioner Maj. Gen. Torrence Saxe, Department of Natural Resources Commissioner John Boyle, and Department of Transportation and Public Facilities Commissioner Ryan Anderson.

These state departments, along with the Department of Public Safety, continue to work in coordination with the City and Borough of Wrangell and other agencies and non-governmental organizations on disaster recovery efforts.

Photo courtesy of the Governor’s office

Department of Military and Veterans Affairs – Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Management (DMVA/DHS&EM)

State of Alaska Individual Assistance registration will be available to impacted Wrangell residents on Nov 28, 8 a.m. – 4 p.m. Register by phone at 844-445-7131 or online at

The State Emergency Operations Center deployed a second Division Supervisor to Wrangell today supporting state-level coordination for community response and engagement.

Department of Transportation & Public Facilities

DOT&PF has begun to methodically remove debris from the roadway to improve search and power restoration access to the 75 homes on the south side of the slide. Safe removal of multiple large trees in the debris field is time-consuming.

Department of Natural Resources

The City and Borough of Wrangell reported an additional landslide near Pat’s Lake Road and the Division of Geophysical and Geologic Surveys (DGGS) mission has been expanded to assess this slide as well. DGGS is pursuing additional detailed aerial LIDAR surveys to assess additional slide risk.

Department of Public Safety

On Friday the Alaska State Troopers released the identities of those missing and those located deceased as listed above. The latest updates from DPS can be found HERE.

City and Borough of Wrangell

The City and Borough of Wrangell published a list of resources for residents impacted by the landslide.

Behavioral Health Counseling Services:

Southeast Alaska Regional Health Consortium

(Please call 877-294-0074)

Available Shelters:

Stikine Inn (907) 874-3388 Sourdough Lodge (907) 305-1095