Joseph Maxwell 'Max' Hamilton


Posted: Thursday, June 05, 2003

Alaska pioneer and Cooper Landing resident Joseph Maxwell "Max" Hamilton died Monday, May 26, 2003, at the Mary Conrad Center in Anchorage. He was 83.

A memorial service will be held for family and friends at 2 p.m. Saturday, June 14, at St. John Neumann Mission Catholic Church on Snug Harbor Road in Cooper Landing. Burial will be in Cooper Landing Cemetery.

Mr. Hamilton was born Sept. 25, 1919, in Conway, N.D. He served in the U.S. Army in the Aleutian Islands during World War II.

In 1939 he arrived in Seward, where he owned and operated a garage. He later was the owner and operator of Hamilton's Place in Cooper Landing from 1953 until 1970. During the mid-1970s, he worked as a mechanics instructor for the Kenai Native Association and also worked for Morrison Knudson. Throughout his career, he was a skilled mechanic and welder and member of the Operating Engineer's Union Local No. 302.

Mr. Hamilton was an avid fisherman, gourmet cook and gardener and enjoyed spending time with his family.

"Max will be fondly remembered by his family and many friends for his generosity, loyalty, nonjudgmental personality, resourcefulness and political commentaries. He was an entrepreneur and pioneer in the true spirit of a dedicated Alaskan. Above all, he was an exemplary and positive role model for future generations," his family said.

Mr. Hamilton is survived by his wife, Belva A. Hamilton of Cooper Landing; daughter and son-in-law, Linda and David Naylor of Port Angeles, Wash.; daughter, Marlene Hamilton of Portland, Ore.; son, John Hamilton of Seward; grandsons, Peter Coleman of Vancouver, Wash., Max Coleman of Eagle River, John Will Hamilton of Seward, Andrew Naylor of Amherst, Mass., and Craig Naylor of Anchorage; granddaughters, Sarah Hamilton of Washington D.C., Courtney Waites of Anchorage and Nicole James of Turlock, Calif.; brothers, Donald Hamilton and Kenneth Hamilton of Washington; and numerous great-grandchildren.

Arrangements were made by Evergreen Memorial Chapel in Anchorage.

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