A tribute

by Greg Lincoln

Hello friends! We are glad to see the Bogus Creek sled dog race come to completion after a delay from the warm spell we had a couple weeks ago. It was an exciting race and congratulations to the new champion Richie Diehl of Aniak. Thank you to the Kuskokwim 300 Race Committee and volunteers for putting on this great event and helping the sport to continue here in our beloved country and homeland. And thank you to all the enduring mushing families who choose to continue on with the mushing lifestyle.

We are happy to see the younger generation taking up the sport and participating in the races along with the veterans, good job to our youth!

As you may have heard, this year the race is dedicated to musher and K300 volunteer Joe Demantle Jr. of Tuluksak who passed away last week from COVID-19. We are sad to see him go, he was a part of the mushing community and always generous and kind. Parting with friends that we have known is always so sorrowful, as we all know and have endured through.

A tribute farewell was held in his honor on the Kuskokwim River Friday, January 29th, 2021 in Bethel as he was being taken back to Tuluksak. Mark Leary and the Bethel Search and Rescue team brought him home via the ice road with K300 and Iditarod Champion Pete Kaiser of Bethel leading the processional for a few miles with his dog team. Quyana to Napaimute Tribal for your diligent efforts to keep the Ice Road open for safe travel. Thank you to Beverly Hoffman and others who organized the tribute and allowing us to pay homage and to bid Joe farewell here on the river he so loved to mush on. Happy Trails to you, until we meet again.