Winona LaDuke: A great chief, Randy Kapashesit, passes on

"Moose Factory, Ontario: When Chief Randy Kapashesit returned this time his remote community in northern Ontario, the earth shook: tremors of 4.4 shook the region, and Randy came home for the last time.

Kapashesit died unexpectedly on April 25 in Minneapolis, leaving a loving companion, Donna Ashamock; two biological children, Waseyabin LaDuke Kapashesit and Ajuawak Kapashesit, both residents of the White Earth reservation of Minnesota; and a grandson, Giiwedin Buckanaga. He also left a community of Cree in northern Ontario, which he had led for some 25 years.

The MoCreebec Council of the Cree Nation exemplifies in many ways the depth of challenges of First Nations. The Cree nation has lived well for generations on the shores of James Bay, adapting with the coming of the Hudson Bay Company, Anglican, Catholic (and a multitude of later) churches, freighter canoes and snow mobiles. Nothing so impacted the MoCreebec community, perhaps, however, as the Hydro Quebec dams of the 1980s and into this millennium. The dams put under water a lifestyle of the Eeyou, the Cree of eastern James Bay, drowning traplines, places where medicines were gathered, ancestors and a history."

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Winona LaDuke: A Great Chief, Randy Kapashesit, Passes On (Indian Country Today 5/13)

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