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Clara Moonin is of Aleut and Indian descent and was born in 1956 in English Bay, Alaska (it is now known as Nanwalek). Her father, Alexander Moonin, was born in English Bay, and her mother Margaret Ukatish Moonin was born in Portlock, Alaska. Clara and her five siblings grew up living in English Bay, Port Graham, and Seldovia. Her father and mother worked in the canneries, and her father also was a commercial fisherman. While Clara was growing up, the Russian Orthodox church was an important part of the community's tradition and she remembers celebrating Russian Orthodox Christmas and Easter. Clara also worked in canneries helping with crab, halibut, salmon and cod, as well as grading fish eggs for packing. Clara currently lives in Seldovia, Alaska.