Former City Manager Ron Drathman Dead at 71

Aaron Selbig

     Former Homer City Manager Ron Drathman passed away Feb. 27th at South Peninsula Hospital. He was 71. Drathman had a lengthy career in public service on the Kenai Peninsula. After working for a decade in Anchorage as a public defender, Drathman moved to Homer in 1984. Beginning in 1993, he served two terms on the Kenai Peninsula Borough, including a two-year stint as Assembly president. 

     In 1999, Drathman was hired as Homer’s city manager. For the next four years, he oversaw a flurry of activity in the city, including construction of the Pioneer Dock at the Homer Harbor and a controversial annexation project that incorporated 4.5 miles of the Diamond Ridge area into the city limits.

     The Homer News reports that Drathman was born in Cleveland, Ohio. After serving in the U.S. Navy and earning a law degree from Stetson University College of Law, Drathman worked in Alaska, including flying for Merrill Flight Service and working on the Alaska Railroad.

     In addition to his public service, Drathman was active in his children’s sports, including Little League, football, hockey and soccer. He was also awarded a lifetime membership in the Fraternal Order of Eagles.

     In a news release Monday, Homer city officials, including Mayor Beth Wythe and members of the city council, expressed condolences to Drathman’s family, noting Drathman’s active and productive civic life. 

     The news release noted that perhaps Drathman’s finest attribute was “his ability to tell a good yarn and to make people laugh.”

     A public service for Drathman was held last Wednesday afternoon at the Homer Elks Lodge.