Waldo family photo.

Carol Waldo, a determined business owner who donated to children’s causes and opened the town’s first cannabis farm, died Dec. 31 at her Lutak Road home. She was 84. A graveside service at Jones Point Cemetery was held Jan. 4. 

Born Carol Jean Alex on Sept. 3, 1939 in Coon Rapids, Iowa, Waldo was the second of six children of equipment operator Ed Alex and his wife Marge. Eight years later, the family moved to Haines with hometown friend Marvin “Squeak” Smith. They operated auto garages, including building one that later became Mountain Market.

Jeannie Menaker this week remembered her childhood friend Carol as “very strong-

willed, active and interested in what was going on in the community.”

“She was straight-laced but not afraid to take risks, that’s for sure. If she wanted to do

something, she would do it,” Menaker said.

Carol attended Haines High School, married Don Audette and moved to Fairbanks. She later returned to Haines, buying property on Main Street and Helms Loop Road. She operated a drive-in doughnut shop on Main Street and married Bill Waldo. Together they operated a logging business, then a cement business.

Waldo lost an adult son and teenage daughter in separate accidents within eight months of each other. She used the insurance money from her daughter’s death to launch a scholarship for “underdog” students, son Kenny Waldo said.

“It was important for her to help kids get a leg up. She helped quite a few kids,” her son said.

For decades, Waldo also provided funding for the public library’s summer reading

program. She took morning walks with sister Elaine Pigott along Main Street for years, picking up trash.

In 2019, Waldo opened Flower Mountain Farm, an award-winning cannabis-growing

operation on property she had bought decades ago.

Her decision to grow pot rankled some people in town, said son Kenny. “She took a lot of heat over that. She didn’t care (about criticism), if she could help one kid with epilepsy, it was worth it for her,” he said.

Waldo won five awards for her cannabis and her business employed six residents.

“She was a big person in a very small body. She was always doing new things,” Jeannie Menaker said.

Carol Waldo was active in the Catholic Church, Emblem Club and Cub Scouts.

She was preceded in death by son Danny Audette, daughter Marjorie Waldo and husband Bill Waldo. She is survived by sister Elaine Pigott, son Kenny Waldo and granddaughter Claire Waldo, all of Haines; grandson Seth Waldo of Wrangell; sisters Marsha Rutherford of Texas andColleen Smith of Anchorage, and by a brother, Stan Alex of Enumclaw, Wash.

Donations in Waldo’s name can be made to Haines Animal Rescue Kennel or to the

library’s summer reading program.