WHEREAS, emergency preparedness is extremely vital for survival in times of crisis; and
WHEREAS, as one of the world’s most seismically active regions, Alaska is highly vulnerable to earthquakes. Of the 20 largest earthquakes in United States history, 16 of them have occurred in Alaska; and
WHEREAS, on March 27, 1964, Alaska was devastated by the Great Alaska Good Friday Earthquake. With a magnitude of 9.2, it was the most powerful earthquake in United States history, the second most powerful recorded worldwide, and in its wake shattered numerous Alaskan communities; and
WHEREAS, the damage of resulting landslides, avalanches, and tsunamis was severe and devastating. In Alaska, Oregon, and California 131 lives were lost along with the damage and destruction of millions of dollars in infrastructure; and
WHEREAS, on this day, the 57th anniversary, we are reminded just how precious life is and we honor all those whose lives were lost or affected by this colossal force of nature, including the courageous first responders, servicemen, and volunteers who sacrificed their time, energy, and lives to assist rescue and relief efforts; and
WHEREAS, we celebrate and honor Alaskans supporting each other and collaborating to rebuild affected communities; providing us with inspiring examples of determination and sense of community; and
WHEREAS, although this day shattered many families, communities, and Alaska as a whole, it forged a safer path forward for our Great State and our nation by advancing our knowledge of earthquake preparedness and earthquake sciences. Planning, emergency kits, and regular practice drills are vital for all Alaskans to be better prepared for the next natural disaster or emergency.
NOW THEREFORE, I, Mike Dunleavy, GOVERNOR OF THE STATE OF ALASKA, do hereby proclaim March 27, 2021 as:
Great Alaska Good Friday Earthquake Remembrance Day
in Alaska, and on this 57th anniversary of the Great Alaska Earthquake, encourage all Alaskans to educate themselves on earthquake safety procedures, participate in commemorative activities, such as exhibits, conferences, and planned community emergency response exercises, and to remember those whose lives were lost that fateful day. I also order all State flags to be lowered to half-staff on March 27, 2021.