Former Soldotna and Sterling resident Dana Wackler died Thursday, Jan. 30, 2003, surrounded by family and friends at her home in Anchorage after a long struggle with lung cancer. She was 48.
A celebration of life will be held from 4 to 9 p.m. Tuesday at BJ's in Soldotna.
Ms. Wackler was born May 23, 1954, in Pekin, Ill., and graduated from Rantoul Township High School in 1972. She moved to Alaska in 1976, where she sold office supplies from 1977 to 1995, then was in the wholesale industry at Alaska Housewares from 1995 to 2000.
She enjoyed bowling, racquetball, attending athletic events, traveling and spending time with family and friends. She was a familiar face in the stands of many high school basketball, football and hockey games.
"Dana meant something different to every person she knew, and she had a unique bond with each friend and family member. She was a loyal friend and a loving mother. Children were the most important things in her life. She had a special way of bonding with kids. Her two grandsons meant more to her than anything, and when Gabe or Eli would enter the room, her expression could change from agony to joy in a heartbeat," her family said.
"She was an inspiration to many people in her battle with cancer. The amount of courage she showed and her amazing will to live was something anyone could admire. She also was incredibly compassionate, and even when she was going through a great deal of pain, she was more concerned about the feelings and well-being of everyone else around her.
"Dana was very dedicated to her family and friends, and she will be missed by all of them."
She was preceded in death by her mother, Joanne McQueen, and grandmother, Lois Murphy.
She is survived by her son, Mark Wackler; daughter, Katie Wackler; grandsons, Elijah Wackler and Gabriel Wackler Murdock; father, David Feaster Sr.; sisters, Diane Hofmann and Linda Belvito; brother, David Feaster Jr.; and numerous other relatives.
Arrangements were made by Anchorage Funeral Home.
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