Commemorating the 1855 Treaty of Point Elliott

Dancer  at Quil Ceda Tulalip Elementary’s  yearly Tulalip Day celebration. 

By Kalvin Valdillez, Tulalip News

“At this time, we remember and acknowledge our ancestors who signed the treaty,” said Tulalip Elder, Inez Bill. “We reflect on the importance of that treaty – who we are as a people and how to continue our way of life – a commemoration of the signing of the 1855 Treaty of Point Elliott that affected the coastal tribes.”

January 22nd marks 167 years since tribal leaders across the northern Puget Sound region gathered at the location that is presently known as Mukilteo. A historic day in which representatives from various tribes, bands and villages, including the people of Snohomish, Lummi, Swinomish and Suquamish, met with Washington Territory Governor Issac Stevens to negotiate and sign a document that would become known as the 1855 Treaty of Point Elliott. Close to 5,000 Coast Salish people were in attendance, and the negations required two translators – one translating English to Chinook Jargon and the other interpreter translated the Chinook Jargon into the traditional languages of the various tribes.

“We honor the good intentions our ancestors had for us in negotiating and signing the treaty,” stated Lena Jones, Tulalip Elder and Education Curator of the Hibulb Cultural Center. “I encourage young folks to listen to their elders when they talk about the treaty and our sovereignty. Understanding the treaty will help you understand the influence it has in every aspect of our lifeways.” 

With their future generations in mind, the tribal leaders ceded upwards of 5 million acres of ancestral land to the United States government for white settlement. Today, that enormous amount of land currently makes up Washington’s King, Snohomish, Skagit and Whatcom counties. The treaty established the Tulalip, Port Madison, Swinomish and Lummi reservations, and thereby acknowledged each tribe as a sovereign nation. In exchange for ceding such large portions of land, the tribes reserved the right to fish at usual and accustomed grounds and stations, as well as the right to hunt and gather on open and unclaimed lands.  

Ryan Miller, Tulalip Tribes Director of Treaty Rights and Governmental Affairs, speaks on the importance of treaty rights and the need to protect them (2019).

“Treaty rights are an inherent right,” explained Ryan Miller, Tulalip Tribes Director of Treaty Rights and Governmental Affairs. “Treaty rights were not given to tribes. It’s a common misconception that the government gives Native Peoples special rights. That’s the exact opposite of how it works. Tribes are sovereign nations, they give up rights and they retain rights. Treaty rights are rights that are not given up by tribes, and they’re upheld by the federal government as part of their trust relationship with the treaty tribes. The tribes’ right to self-govern is the supreme law of the land. It’s woven into the U.S. constitution as well as many legal decisions and legislative articles. The constitution says Congress has the power to make treaties with sovereign nations, and that treaties are the supreme law of the land.”

Tulalip Fisherman, Brian Green, expressed, “The treaty is literally my livelihood. We fight for our rights every day – fighting to keep our treaty rights. I want my kid’s kids to come out here and be able to exercise their treaty rights. Not everyone has to be a fisherman, but it should be there if they want to exercise it.”

Tribal communities faced difficult years after the signing of the treaty, including the boarding school era. Fifty years after the signing of the 1855 Treaty of Point Elliott, the Tulalip Indian Boarding School opened, one of many Indian boarding schools throughout the country. During this dark era of American history, Native children were forcibly removed from their families and had to attend these schools and learn how to live the new colonized lifestyle.

The institutions were established to ‘civilize’ the Indigenous population. But while at these boarding schools, the kids were often punished, physically and mentally, for speaking their traditional language and practicing their spiritual and cultural teachings. Many children died as a result of the abuse, while the ones who made it through these atrocities often, and unknowingly, passed on their traumas to the next generations, causing vicious cycles of abuse and destructive coping mechanisms to deal with that abuse, throughout the years.

During this era, the U.S. Government also outlawed traditional practices and spiritual ceremonies that took place on these lands since time immemorial. Coast Salish tribal members could not sing their songs, perform their dances or speak their ancestral languages, and therefore could not pass those teachings to the next generations. Longhouses were demolished and modern-day houses were erected on the reservations. The people who inhabited, lived-off and cared for this land for ages were to learn the ways of agriculture and become farmers.

The descendants of the signatories of the 1855 Treaty of Point Elliott were in the middle of experiencing the horrors of forced assimilation when the last hereditary chief of the Snohomish, William Shelton, stepped in to save his people’s heritage, culture and way of life. In 1912, persistence paid off when he convinced the Tulalip Superintendent and the U.S. Secretary of Interior to build a longhouse along the shores of Tulalip Bay. 

William created a way for the tribes to practice their traditional lifeways every winter by informing U.S. Government officials that the people would be celebrating and commemorating the anniversary of the treaty once a year at the longhouse. This allowed tribal elders and wisdom keepers the opportunity to teach the younger generations about their culture, which seemed to be slipping away at an alarming rate due to colonized efforts. The annual gathering became known as Treaty Days, a yearly potlatch that often extends into the early morning of the following day.

Treaty Days is an event that tribal members across the region look forward to every year. Although the original longhouse, which Shelton convinced the government to build, was replaced in the sixties, people met at the historical location every January 22nd for over 100 years after the first Treaty Days ceremony took place. Unfortunately, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, tribal members have not been able to gather to commemorate the treaty for the past three years. However, many tribal families still take the time to honor, reflect, study and pass on the knowledge of the treaty to the next generations at home, until it is safe to convene once more in large numbers at the smokehouse.

“I think that we have the responsibility to revisit the treaty all the time, so we know we are keeping our younger people abreast and informed as much as possible,” said Ray Fryberg, Tulalip Elder and Hibulb Cultural Center Tribal Research Historian. “We gave up a lot in the treaty to keep our sovereignty – to be able to determine our own future and our own direction in our tribal path. And also just living on the reservation, and protecting those rights that were reserved for us, as well as the spiritual and cultural way of life.”

Added Lena, “The treaty accepts the fact that our people have the right to organize themselves, protect our way of life, and care for our resources. Our tribes have significant control of, and rights to, important natural resources such as fishing. As our language and culture become stronger, we are able to help others understand how to take care of the earth and one another.”

The 1855 Treaty of Point Elliott is currently on display at the Hibulb Cultural Center as a part of their The Power of Words: A History of Tulalip Literacy exhibit. For more information, including the most up-to-date COVID guidelines and restrictions, please contact the museum at (360) 716-2600 or visit the Hibulb Cultural Center’s Facebook page.

Honoring our Indigenous educators

Indigenous educators recognized for having 20+ years of experience.

By Micheal Rios, Tulalip News

While the vast majority of students were enjoying their winter break and anxiously awaiting what would become Snowmageddon, a special gathering took place among the Indigenous educators of Marysville School District. Co-hosted by MSD’s Indian Education and Tulalip’s Positive Youth Development teams, all Indigenous educators within the District, and their families, were invited to Heritage High School’s commons area to be honored for their united goal of decolonizing education. 

Decolonizing education means to dismantle a colonial system. In this case, the specific colonial system is education, which wasn’t integrated until the 1970s after decades of legal battles. So then how can a system that separated white people and people of color for hundreds of years, a system that was created and maintained by white people for the benefit of white people, all of a sudden become an inclusive system that prioritizes the success of all? Put simply, it can’t. 

Tulalip elder Dawn Simpson, with 50 years of education work, stands beside Heritage counselor Shonta Paul.

In order to achieve such a lofty goal, it’ll require the tireless pursuit and often underappreciated life’s work of Native culture bearers who are fully aware that they are raging against the machine and regularly feeling like no matter how much they do it’s never enough. Yet, for these special few, they know the deck is stacked against them but they’ll answer the call anyway. They take the college classes, get the required degrees, and receive the necessary accreditations to gain entry into colonized school systems as Indigenous educators. 

Armed with traditional teachings and ancestral wisdom, and fueled by a relentless love for their people, it’s the Indigenous educators who are fighting to change the education system from within. From their positions they can actively provide an environment where Native students can learn about, and be proud of, their history and culture. It is these educators who were celebrated on that December evening. 

“I’m going on my eighteenth year now working in education. In my new position I’m so honored to be working with all of you, the beautiful Indigenous educators of our District. As far as I know, this is the first time a celebration like this has been held exclusively for you all,” remarked Matt Remle, MSD Indian Education coordinator, to all in attendance. “The thought behind this event is simple. We want to honor, encourage, and uplift our Native educators because what you all do every day is remarkable and worth celebrating.”

“I want to thank you all for being here and allowing us to acknowledge you together as our Indigenous educators,” added Jessica Bustad, executive director of Tulalip Education. “Words can’t express how important you are, and the work that you do to positively impact our youth is immeasurable. But we do know how important it is for us to support each other.


Heritage teacher Marina Benally (center) with her son and daughter who both work as educators
within the District.

“We know that these systems we work in were not built for our Indigenous students,” she continued. “Times are difficult right now, but it’s never been easy doing the kind of work we do. What keeps us going is a shared dedication to our students’ success and a passion to do what we can to help them thrive in and out of the classroom. The Indigenous students within the District need and depend on us. They are so fortunate to have educators who genuinely care for them, and I hope you all know how much of a difference you make.”

Public education was among the first colonial institutions deployed over Native American tribes as a tactic to subordinate, confuse and debilitate. The effort to forcibly assimilate Native children through education took place all of the United States. Today, we refer to this effort as the Boarding School Era; when Native children were removed from their families and placed in faraway boarding schools to eradicate Native culture. Whether the boarding schools were sponsored by the church, state or federal government is of little difference. The Native students were stripped of their traditional languages, clothing, and teachings. They weren’t able to see themselves in the curriculum nor in those individuals appointed as teachers.

Because of our Indigenous educators’ efforts, the same cannot be said for Native students within Marysville School District. They have opportunity to see themselves in Since Time Immemorial curriculum, and to learn traditional teachings from their elders who unapologetically display their Native cultures in the school setting. From intricately handwoven cedar to vibrant ribbon skirts and beaded earrings, to Lushootseed words and the heartbeat of hand drums, the sights and sounds of a thriving Native culture is embodied by these educators.

During the celebratory dinner, within the commons area of Heritage High School, the sentiment was shared how fitting the location was. The high school located on the Tulalip Reservation, dreamt of by past leaders, serves as a model that can redefine and inspire Indigenous education. Nationally, many Native students struggle with low academic achievement and only about half graduate from high school. Contrast that with Heritage High recently setting records for overall student enrollment and total number of seniors earning their diploma. It becomes easy then to understand the importance of allowing Native youth to learn in a community-led, culturally-rich environment.

Marina Benally has been teaching Tulalip’s youth for twenty-three years. Most recently as a teacher at Heritage where she is routinely spoken highly of by her students, past and present. Before the intimate gathering, Marina asked her son, Terrance, and daughter, Amanda, to stand with her. Her kids have inherited their mom’s passion for educating the next generation, as they both work as Indigenous educators in the District as well.

“We love being here and are forever grateful to be entrusted with educating your students,” said an emotional Marina. “Ray and Sheryl Fryberg recruited me to come here and help the Tulalip youth back in 1999. Since then, we’ve made Tulalip our home, and you all have helped make us feel like we belong. We thank the Tulalip community for upholding us. Like each and every one of the Indigenous educators out there, we stand on the shoulders of giants who came before us.”

 Quil Ceda 4th grade teacher Tanya Houle (Turtle Mountain Chippewa) sharing her educational journey. 

There were songs shared, traditional medicines offered, and many messages of encouragement between the group of educators. After a hearty meal, a special recognition of those who had 20+ years working in education ensued. Each offered more good words on the mic before being blanketed. Tulalip elder Dawn Simpson received a huge ovation when she announced she now has over 50 years helping her people achieve their academic goals, and she’s still working.

“Dawn was the lifeline for many of us educators here today,” shared Quil Ceda assistant principal Chelsea Craig. “When we were the young students attending schools within the Marysville School Districts, we may not have had much support, but we had Dawn. She was always there and some of us may not be doing the work we are today if it wasn’t for Dawn paving that foundation.”

Imagine how many Native students within the District these awe-inspiring educators are impacting every year. How many kids are excited to go to school and learn from teachers who look like them, or are emboldened to wear traditional regalia, even if it’s just accessories, because their teachers sparked that Native pride? Now, envision just a fraction of these students being inspired to create real change because their educators made them believe it was possible. That’s a kind of cultural legacy powerful enough to take down a system, maybe even to decolonize education.

Community-led project, the Recovery Café, receives $25,000 anonymous donation

By Kalvin Valdillez, Tulalip News; Photo courtesy of the Tulalip Problem Gambling Program

“This project is important because we have nowhere for our people who are sober and clean, or want to get sober and clean, to gather,” expressed Tulalip Recovery Liaison, Helen Gobin-Henson. “We have so many people who are homeless, who are hungry, they could come to the café and enjoy a meal. And the people who are sober and clean can get together as a group and connect there at the café – a safe and supportive place to gather.”

Nearly two years ago, a group of Tulalip and Marysville community members met at the Tulalip Administration Building to attend a four-day training, spanning over the course of two weekends. By successfully completing the training, hosted by the Tulalip Problem Gambling Program, each participant earned certification and the official title of a recovery coach. 

In a nation where opioid overdose related deaths continue to climb, the support of a recovery coach can be an effective tool for those on the road to recovery. According to the CDC, more than 93,000 people died of drug overdose in the U.S. during 2020. A near 30% increase from 2019. Last July, the Washington State Department of Health reported that there were 40 more drug overdose deaths in the first three months of 2021 than the first three months of 2020, and that the state’s overdose rates were ‘on pace to break another record in 2021’, based on that preliminary study.

“Our philosophy is to help the community heal from within,” said Problem Gambling Counselor, Robin Johnson. “The more people that we can teach to be recovery coaches, and have them in the community and available to others, that is just going to snowball. A recovery coach is someone in-between a sponsor and a counselor. They’re there to help, depending on the individual’s needs – finding out what those needs are, and meeting them there. This is not the first recovery coach training that we’ve had, but it was the most successful and we’ve had a better response and incorporated not only chemical addiction, but also gambling addiction.”

Throughout the pandemic, the recovery coaches stayed in-touch with each other, with a shared focus and passion of helping their fellow community members, who are battling addiction, attain and maintain a sober and healthy lifestyle. While brainstorming ways on how to reach more people and better service the local recovery community with their newly acquired knowledge and skills, the coaches landed on the idea of opening a Recovery Café in the Tulalip-Marysville area.

Since 2004, Recovery Cafés have been popping up throughout the country, after the first café was established in Seattle. The cafés provide a positive environment for those struggling with addiction, and offer an opportunity for addicts to interact with others who share the same goal of getting clean. Participants can also attend group sessions at the café, which ultimately helps individuals create a strong support system for their recovery journey while also assisting others who are on a similar path. Recovery Cafés have also been a safe space for the homeless populations in multiple cities, as they offer warm and dry shelter and a place for people to grab a bite to eat. 

With a desire to open up a Recovery Café as soon as possible, the group instantly began planning by scouting locations, designing a logo, raising funds and establishing a dedicated team of professionals to help navigate the process of opening up the café. 

Currently, the team consists of those six recovery coaches, as well as Tulalip Tribal Prosecutor Brian Kilgore, Tulalip Recovery Liaison Helen Gobin-Henson, Tulalip ODMAP Social Worker Jackson Nahpi, and Robin Johnson and Sarah Sense-Wilson of the Problem Gambling program. The Tulalip Foundation has also lent their expertise to the project, helping the Recovery Café become a non-profit organization, as well as apply for and obtain grants. 

Shortly after announcing the plans to open a Recovery Café locally, the group received a generous anonymous donation to help kick the project off. 

“It was a nice surprise, we got a $25,000 donation, and it showed up in the mail actually,” said Nicole Sieminski, Tulalip Foundation Executive Director. “It came with a nice letter from a company that manages private donations. It was a pleasant surprise and I think it will get the Recovery Café off to a good start as we are looking for funding sources and funding opportunities. There’s actually funding available through the Recovery Café Network, but part of that funding is contingent on raising other funds. By receiving this anonymous donation, it will allow us to access other additional funding in the near future. All around it is a great benefit and a great help.”

While the team continues searching for a space for the Recovery Café, they are also working to establish a board of directors, recruit additional volunteers, finalize the Recovery Café logo and raise more funds. The recovery coaches will also be doing community outreach in the coming months. 

If you are interested in helping get this project started and helping people maintain a clean and healthy lifestyle, please contact the Problem Gambling program at (360) 716-4304 for more information. 

Said Brian, “I think that the power of having a physical place, around which to build services, is going to be really transformative for all the work we’re doing. Government, non-government, volunteers, we’re all working the same problem – we’re trying to save lives, trying to get parents back to their kids and rebuild families and communities and stop people from dying, but we just haven’t had a physical place to do it. I’m really excited about this group of people. I think that they’re going to go out into the community and they’re going to create a physical space where people can come in and get wraparound support and services.”

Atlas Genomics donates $50,000 to Tulalip Boys & Girls Club

By Micheal Rios, Tulalip News

We’ve officially entered the season of giving and holiday cheer. In that spirit, the Tulalip Boys & Girls Club is thrilled to announce a whopping $50,000 donation received from Atlas Genomics, a diagnostic molecular laboratory based in Seattle. It’s the largest single donation from outside the Tribe the Club has ever received.

“This money will be used for necessary upgrades to the building, expanding programs, and continuing our ability to offer a variety of sports and after school activities for our kids,” said Club Director, Shawn Sanchey. “This donation by Atlas creates even more opportunities for our kids to grow in all aspects. 

“One way to look at is not all our kids play sports, so being able to purchase new kitchen supplies, upgrade playground equipment, or develop new education programs are all pivotal to us helping them grow as young individuals,” Shawn continued. “I grew up here in the Club, so it means so much to be able to continue creating partnerships outside the Tribe that continue to provide opportunities for our kids that I had growing up. Grandma Diane was here when I was a kid, and now that I’m Director of the Club I’m able to create a lasting impact on our kids just like she does. We have kids who come here daily that say they want to work at the Club when they’re grownups. That’s a great feeling knowing we are setting that positive example.”

‘The Club’, as it’s affectionately been nicknamed by hundreds of regularly attending children, is a safe place where kids can just be kids. While there, children are routinely exposed to healthy food choices, create an abundance of happy memories, and make relationships that last a lifetime.

The Club is the first of its kind to be built on tribal land in Washington State. Established in 1995, 2021 marks twenty-six years of commitment to the community. Through before and after school programs, it aims to help young people improve their lives by building self-esteem, developing values, and teaching skills during critical periods of growth.

Serving as a model for those working to improve the lives of young people in the surrounding communities, the Club is the primary beneficiary of an annual fundraising auction. With each auction building off the success of previous years, the Club has not only been able to sustain services, but to complete much needed campus expansions that add additional learning and activity space. 

It was actually at the auction earlier this year that the seeds were planted for Atlas Genomic to become the title sponsor for next year’s 24th annual auction. Teri Nelson, executive director of tribal services, hosted a table and one of her invitees had an amazing experience. So much so that when Teri’s friend came across a company looking to make a large financial donation to a local organization, she recommended the Tulalip Boys & Girls club for all the great work they do. The rest, as they say, is history.

“I think giving back to our kids is so important because they have to recover from this pandemic, too,” said Teri. “If we can continue to offer them after school programs and extracurricular activities and all the things that make it so much fun to be a kid, then what a true difference that makes for all kids who attend the Club every day. I’m just thankful that a friendship could evolve into making something as impactful as this being able to happen and truly benefit the Tulalip community.”

On December 10, representatives from Atlas Genomics arrived in Tulalip to meet with tribal leadership before getting an in-person tour of the Club. They marveled at all there was to offer on a reservation bound boys and girls club. They were warmly welcomed by Club kids in the gymnasium prior to writing the $50,000 check.

Shawn and Grandma Diane blanketed the group for their donation and commitment to helping Tulalip’s kids, while Natosha Gobin and her partner Thomas Williams offered a song and prayer of gratitude. 

“It’s an honor and a privilege to be here today to meet such a tremendous group of people working to support the Boys and Girls Club organization,” said Chris Destro, President of Atlas Genomics. “When this opportunity to give back was presented to us, there was zero hesitation; it was an immediate yes. A huge shout-out to Diane and Shawn for what they are doing here. As a company, we’re humbled for being given the opportunity to help out and add to what’s already been built here.”

Hip hop legend, Redman, visits Tulalip Remedy

By Kalvin Valdillez, Tulalip News

“Next,” rang out the unmistakeable, highly recognizable voice of a hip hop legend, whose work spans across the past three decades. A steady line of fans, the majority of whom did their best impression of the famous lyricist and actor while they waited, extended out of the doors of the Tulalip Remedy retail cannabis boutique. The 2x Grammy nominated artist shared conversation and posed for photos with each of his fans on the morning of December 11. However, this wasn’t your typical meet-and-greet, once fans received their photos and autographs, the rapper then asked, “now what type of bud you smoking today?”

“I come here all the time, I am a regular,” shared starstruck fan, Jordan Brown. “But when I heard about Redman, I had to come down and check him out. From ‘How High’ to ‘Power’, I’ve watched him in all that.”

It was a dream come true for many lifelong fans of Redman when they learned that he would be assisting them with their purchases, and that they would receive top-tier strain recommendations from a living icon in the cannabis culture. If you aren’t familiar with Redman (also known as Funk Doctor Spock), he is not only Grammy nominated, but he also has multiple platinum, gold, and silver albums under his belt including ‘Muddy Waters’, ‘Whut Thee Album’, ‘Doc’s Da Name’ and’ Blackout!’. And that’s not to mention his work as an actor. His voice could be heard as both cartoon and video game characters in numerous projects throughout the years, and of course he is known by many for his role as Jamal King in the stoner cult classic movie, ‘How High’. 

After the experience of meeting one of her heroes, Mara Brown excitedly exclaimed, “It is cool to see that he is really just one of us. He likes a lot of the same stuff as us and shares a lot of our opinions. It shows that he cares about us and enjoys making all of us feel good through his art and music. It makes you want to keep supporting him. Redman is a real person, someone you can look up to and support his message.”

Throughout the day, Redman signed a variety of memorabilia that his fans held close to their heart, including a VHS copy of ‘How High’, which prompted him to ask the fan, “Do you still got a VCR?” His comedic personality that he is famously known for did not disappoint during the appearance, and his presence uplifted the spirits of both the fans and employees during the two-and-a-half-hour event. One fan dressed in a nun’s habit and sunglasses, because Redman’s character in ‘How High’ also dressed in the religious get-up when he attended a Halloween costume party as Deloris from the movie Sister Act. Another fan and local community member, Alex Jimenez, did not wish to purchase anything from the store (and would’ve forgone the photo as well if Redman didn’t insist on flicking-it-up together), but simply attended to meet the rapper and gift him with t-shirts and hoodies that he designed himself through his business.

Alex stated, “I just came to meet Redman and give him some clothing that we made at Picture That Printing. We gifted him with an Every Child Matters shirt and an MMIW shirt and our ‘Tradish’ sweater. I felt like it would be nice to give him something that represented our culture.”

As one of the very first tribal owned cannabis retail shops, Tulalip Remedy has flourished since first opening its doors three years ago. The shop is known for their great customer service, and the friendly and knowledgeable staff at Remedy have helped change the overall perception of marijuana in the community. More and more people are learning about the benefits the plant has to offer while simultaneously becoming loyal Tulalip Remedy customers. 

For many, marijuana serves as an actual remedy, helping individuals manage diabetes, Alzheimer’s disease, anxiety, depression, insomnia, PTSD, multiple sclerosis, fibromyalgia, arthritis, epilepsy, cancer, among many other diagnoses. The medicinal aspect is something that caught the attention of Redman over a decade ago. Learning how the plant, which he has such an affinity for, is helping people in their everyday lives has strengthened his love for cannabis all the more.  

“It’s a blessing to see how far the cannabis culture has come since I first entered the game in ’92,” Redman shared. “The part I like most about it is that it’s not just for recreational use, it’s also medicinal. It helps save the lives of kids, and of many people – any kind of person with a disorder, internal or external. I actually did a crash course on cannabis at Oaksterdam University out in Oakland. After I did that course, in maybe 2005 or ‘06, I was like wow I didn’t know about all these components involved in the cannabis plant. There are over 400 components that haven’t been discovered yet, we won’t even be here in this lifetime by the time 30 of them are explored. I find that very interesting.”

He continued, “When I look back at how people used to look at cannabis, like we were just smoking for fun, and seeing what it is doing now, what it’s doing today, it has come a long way tremendously. I gotta thank the people and the scientists for bringing this awareness medically. Let’s keep going with it.”

Redman is the third celebrity cannabis connoisseur to make an appearance at Tulalip’s recreational shop this year thanks to a partnership between Tulalip Remedy and local YouTube show, The Dab Roast. Whenever the show brings celebrity guests to the Pacific Northwest, they make sure to line up an appearance at Tulalip Remedy. Previously, The Dab Roast and Tulalip Remedy brought out both Tommy Chong and Ken Shamrock to the reservation to meet the people of the community. 

“Our show, The Dab Roast, is ten dabs and ten questions with celebrities,” explained Jimmy Bako, Sales and Marketing Manager for The Dab Roast. “Obviously there’s a great tie between cannabis and music, so when we bring these stars in, Tulalip Remedy benefits greatly for bringing the name into the store and amplifying their imagery. It’s turned into quite a great marketing partnership. We have our cannabis line out during the events, but our main goal is to amplify the show. Getting the opportunity to come out here and participate in the cannabis industry and really be about the culture is a huge lesson. What Tulalip does for us is amazing.”

Although he was nothing short of astonished when reflecting on the progress the cannabis culture has made over the years, Redman was also quick to note that there is still a lot of progress to be made going forward. As more states around the country are beginning to decriminalize marijuana, he feels that what is needed most amongst the culture is organization, access to resources and empowerment, and he also stresses the importance of working together. For this reason, Redman co-founded the National Cannabis Party, the first-of-it’s-kind non-partisan political party.

He said, “I wanted to be behind the responsibility of the cannabis industry, that’s why you’ve never seen a Redman grow, a Redman vape pen, a Redman anything up to this point. I was saving my brand for the bigger picture. Now I’m the co-founder of the first FEC National Cannabis Party. Meaning, you have the Democratic Party, you have the Republican Party, and now you have the first FEC approved National Cannabis Party. We’re about the stability and structure of the cannabis industry. The Democratic Party has people as a unit to state their claims and issues to better their community, in order to create change and opportunity. So does the Republican Party. The cannabis industry is a billion-dollar industry, moving up to a trillion; do we have an umbrella where we can state claims and issues about this cannabis industry? No. 

“The cannabis industry is going to make the profit regardless, but we need more purpose. We need to unite more. We need to get involved with expungements and getting everybody out that’s been incarcerated because of cannabis. We need to worry about those areas and communities that have been affected by WOD, the war on drugs. We’re the guys that’s getting our hands dirty to implement these programs and help other dispensaries and other cannabis brands implement more programs for their communities. We were just founded this year, so hopefully we’re on the right track. If you want to find out more and do research please hit us up at and find out what we’re doing.”

Redman’s Remedy appearance was a fun experience for everyone involved and his larger than life personality brought laughter and smiles to all of the local cannabis enthusiasts and hip hop heads alike. In fact, the event was such a success that both parties expressed a desire to build upon this newfound relationship and continue collaborating in the future.

“This was my first time hearing about Tulalip and Remedy, I loved the energy,” Redman said. “I loved the attitude of the people. I like helping people and I got the chance to do something different today and service some cannabis to the people, talk to the people and take some pictures and meet the people of the Tribe and community. I want to thank the Tulalip Remedy spot for showing me love. I am going through a transformation with myself and needed to surround myself with good energy and good people, so I am so happy I came here today, it fed my soul.”

Tulalip Remedy Manager Jennifer Ashman added, “Redman was an amazing addition to our staff that day. I definitely look forward to working with him on some upcoming projects at our store and in the community. Remedy definitely considers him a part of our family now.”

Youth Summit uplifts, inspires and empowers

By Micheal Rios, Tulalip News

On a frigid December morning, close to one hundred Tulalip community members rose at the crack of dawn in order to attend a brilliantly designed event held in the Tulalip Resort’s Orca Ballroom. Created in collaboration by the tribe’s Problem Gambling Program and Youth Council, the 2021 Youth Summit created memories galore through a variety of team building workshops and a series of inspirational Native influencers offering a unique blend of unforgettable entertainment mixed with words of wisdom.

Envisioning Our Indigenized Future was the theme of this year’s Youth Summit, held on December 11.

“We are happy to provide the momentum to do this and co-host a gathering with you all here today,” said youth council chairman Kaiser Moses during the early bird breakfast. “We chose the theme ‘envisioning our indigenized future’ because essentially the youth are the future and today we want to envision what we are capable of with all the opportunities available to us by our tribe. A lot of these opportunities are only possible by educating ourselves in order to avoid the pitfalls that effect so many of our people. We want to help each other develop the tools necessary to stay on a good path and realize those opportunities.”

The “pitfalls” Kaiser spoke of include substance abuse, gambling addiction, and a general lack of responsibility for one’s own actions when repeatedly choosing short-term pleasures over long-term success. Academics, physicians, and all other manners of wellbeing experts have written and lectured at length over these pitfalls and most recently have come to refer to them as ‘diseases of despair’.

Instead of dwelling on these negative concepts and bringing everyone down emotionally, Youth Summit coordinator Sarah Sense-Wilson went with a more effective strategy to showcase endless possibility through groundbreaking Native role models whose stories emphasize sobriety, self-respect, and conviction of culture. This star-studded lineup of all-Native entertainers shared a common belief that as Native people we are not bound by despair, but by resiliency and the ability to overcome any obstacle, real or imagined.

Innovative hip hop artist Supaman stunned the crowd with his one-of-a-kind presentation combining Native culture, comedy and urban music. He dazzled onlookers with his vibrant fancy dance regalia before captivating them with his uplifting words full of compassion and encouragement. 

Supaman’s uncanny ability to connect with his audience was exemplified by his message, “Yes, this country was founded on the attempted genocide of our people. Yes, they employed all kinds of violent means and federal policies to eradicate us from the face of the Earth…But you know what this means don’t you? This means that you all come from families who defied the odds. As beautiful, young Native people in 2021, each breath you take is in defiance to a system that didn’t want you to exist. Each one of you is a blessing that our ancestor’s prayed for.

“That’s why it’s so important for us to embrace who we are,” he continued. “We must uphold our culture and pass it on like our ancestors did long before us. I challenge you to learn as much as you can, participate as often as you can, and share everything you know because one day you will be an elder. And when you’re an elder the younger people will look to you for traditional teachings and protocols for ceremony. They will look to you for that knowledge and you’ll want to be able to give them the knowledge and guidance they’re searching for. That is how we pass on our culture in a good way. I believe in you. Your ancestors believe in you.” 

After Supaman’s riveting performance and many good words shared, high schooler and Tulalip tribal member Image Enick shared his appreciation by gifting him a handmade drum. Many in attendance then waited their turn to take photos with the Native hip hop icon.

The full day’s Youth Summit was filled with uplifting messages echoing the sentiments shared by Supaman, exercises in compassion building and benefits of team work, and informative presentations regarding the energy drain that social media and unchecked video gaming can have on youth’s social and emotional development. There was also an informative breakout session with Tulalip’s own podcaster Dominick Joseph. He shared his educational journey and gave listeners a glimpse into his podcast world, while receiving a number of topic requests for future episodes.

Performances by DJ Element on the turntables and Swil Kanim with his serenading classical violin both received a huge round of applause. However, it may have been a pair of brothers standing a whopping 4 feet and 7 inches tall that made the biggest impression. Known for their roles in the Emmy nominated TV show Reservation Dogs, Lil Mike and Funny Bone captivated their multi-generational audience through comedy, hip hop lyrics, and motivational stories about not letting haters get in your way of excellence. They shared that they’ve been overlooked their whole lives. If they let what others think of them matter, then they’d have never made it to primetime actors on a hit TV series.

In between performances and leadership sessions, Summit participants had many opportunities to fill up on event swag designed by Native artists and businesses. From t-shirts and backpacks to hoodies and essential school supplies, many could be seen leaving the Resort with their hands, bags, and hearts full of newly acquired swag and renewed confidence for their Indigenized future. 

After the exhilarating eight-hour Youth Summit, event coordinator Sarah Sense-Wilson shared, “We are thrilled with amount of participation and engagement we had today by such a special group of Indigenous youth. Our goal was to provide valuable and meaningful workshops that centered on our youth, while promoting health, well-being and resilience. Our workshops and presentations ranged from QPR (Suicide Prevention Certification), to a wide range of motivational speakers, to teambuilding and ropes course activities. We hope all the local Native youth who joined us for a full day of energizing, fun-filled edutainment will remember the messages shared today and use them as fuel for empowerment whenever needed. Their future is our future.”

Tulalip Marina building named in honor of Charlie Cortez

By Kalvin Valdillez, Tulalip News

One year after the Tulalip community and various law enforcement agencies scoured the open waters and surrounding shorelines, hoping to find any sign of Tulalip Fish and Wildlife Officer Charlie Cortez who was reported lost at sea while on duty, they convened once more at the Tulalip Bay Marina in his honor. 

Ever since that stormy night of November 17, 2020, Charlie’s family, friends, Tribe and fellow officers have been grappling with his absence and missing his presence. Charlie’s infectious laughter and one-of-a-kind personality often left anyone who had the pleasure of interacting with him with a huge smile, much like his very own, a signature known by those who held him dearest throughout the reservation.

Officer Cortez’s signature smile will live on forever, not only in memory of his loved ones, but at the front of the Tulalip Marina Building on a plaque that officially identifies the recently constructed establishment as the Tulalip Tribes Charlie Joe Cortez Marina Building.

“November 17th is a day we’ll remember forever, having one of our officers lost in the line of duty,” said Tulalip Chairwoman, Teri Gobin. “It’s important to take time to heal as a community. Not only his children but his family, you are his legacy. You will be moving forward with his work, his words, bringing his memory through.”

 She continued, “My heart breaks for each and every one of you. To lose a son, a brother, grandson, a father, it’s something that can’t be replaced. But eventually every time you think about him, you’ll be thinking of the happy times, the laughs and good times you had together. We know he is okay now, he’s with our people, he’s with his grandparents and family on the other side. It’s an honor to be here today to support the family and naming this building after our fallen officer, Charlie Joe Cortez.”

Lushootseed Language Warrior, Natosha Gobin, said a prayer in the traditional sduhubs language before Tribal members Glen Gobin (Vice-Chair), Kelly Moses and Jason Gobin offered a song and a blessing of the new building. Tulalip Chief of Police Chris Sutter also shared a few heartfelt remarks as he fondly reminisced the fallen hero and extended his love and condolences to the family. Chief Sutter then called upon Charlie’s daughter, Peyton, to help unveil the plaque. On her count, they removed the blanket which covered the engraving together, much to the cheers, tears, claps and hand squeezes of the crowd of approximately one-hundred people. 

Following the ceremony, Charlie’s family held a luncheon at the Tulalip Gathering Hall, where they gifted the Tribe’s BOD and executive staff members with blankets for the special honoring, as well as bracelets, which read Charlie’s name and End of Watch date. They also offered t-shirts and candles to the community for their support over the past year.  

“It was very heartwarming to see the community gather together today, as well as the other law enforcement agencies that came in our support,” expressed Charlie’s mother, Paula Cortez. “Seeing the plaque for the first time, it was very beautiful. It warmed my heart to see the effort that went into dedicating the Marina building in Charlie Joe Cortez’s name. I am deeply grateful to the Board of Directors for making the decision to dedicate the building, it really means a lot to us and the family.

“It’s going to be a place where his kids can go to pay tribute to their dad on special days like his birthday or Father’s Day. We haven’t had a real place to go except for the memorial wall that we decorated down there. I think it’s important for the kids and the future generations to see that the Tribe honored Charlie in a good way as a fallen officer. The ceremony was just beautiful and it really touched all of our hearts.”

Invisible no more: Tulalip flag soars at every Marysville School District campus

By Micheal Rios, Tulalip news

For the first time ever, the red, white and black colors of the Tulalip flag are soaring over every Marysville School District campus. Tulalip’s iconic orca was raised up at each elementary, middle school, high school, and even District headquarters during the week of November 17th

In each instance, the 3 foot by 5 foot cloth signifying the Tulalip Tribes as a sovereign nation was raised by a proud student representative and young Tulalip culture bearer.

“About a decade ago, my coworker Ricky Belmont and I started asking the schools we work at to fly the Tulalip Tribes flag out of recognition for the tribe being a sovereign nation and to honor the treaty lands that schools are built upon,” explained Matt Remle, Indian Education Program Coordinator for Marysville School District. “Last spring, Marysville Pilchuck High School became the first school to agree and now flies the flag daily.

“Last month, in collaboration with the Tulalip Tribes and the MSD equity department, [we received authorization] to raise the Tulalip flag at the district office. By the end of November, every school in the district was raising the Tulalip flag. No more erasure, no more invisibility!”

It’s no secret that Marysville and Tulalip have a history rife with conflict and misunderstanding, especially when it comes to the subject of education. However, flying the Tulalip flag is a symbol of hope for the future. It’s an action that intends to create a better partnership between the two communities, while acknowledging the Tribe’s self-governed and federally recognized status.

“I grew up in a time when it wasn’t safe to be Indian in the Marysville School District,” shared Quil Ceda Vice Principal Chelsea Craig. “We had to check being Indian at the door. We didn’t see ourselves in the school. We didn’t see ourselves in the curriculum. So now, this simple act of raising our Tulalip flag on these school campuses becomes a huge act of healing for our Marysville/Tulalip community. This is the joining of two communities on the homeland of our people.

“This is the start of a must-needed change,” she continued. “My dream is seeing our own curriculum in the schools and for Since Time Immemorial to be taught in every classroom, not just in history. And for all the youth here at this history making moment, you are the ones who know how to do this world better. I see you doing that every day. Treating one another with love and respect. You are our future leaders, so I want you all to be witness of this work here today. When you’re older, you’ll remember why we did this. You’ll know what it really means to be one as a Marysville/Tulalip community and you’ll make sure this kind of good work continues.”

From the schools to the District headquarters, every time the orca was raised up it was treated as a moment to educate and celebrate. Tulalip representatives from our own Education division and cultural ambassadors spoke passionately about what this show of respect means for the many Native students within the school district. It allows a more diverse student body to feel accepted and be openly proud of their culture.

After tribal members and school administrators lent historical perspective and words of encouragement for a brighter future to the large gatherings at each school flag pole, a coalition of Native representatives with drum-in-hand offered traditional canoe family songs. The sentiment being in order for both communities to in face move forward together and in a good way, they’d have to pull in synch and in the same direction, like a canoe family. 

The final stop on the multi-day mission to raise the Tulalip flag across all Marysville School District campuses was Tulalip’s own Early Learning Academy. The expectation being that for these young ones, they grow up in a school district only knowing what it’s like to be accepted and embraced for their cultural traditions and teachings. A special moment occurred when the group prepared to sing their canoe songs. 

“A staff member brought her grandson to me and asked if he could drum with us,” said Matt Remle. “Made my heart feel good. That’s why we do what do for the next generation. So they can grow up in a better society, not invisible but instead empowered and uplifted. Knowing they’re sovereign, knowing that they can be themselves no matter where they are.”

By adding the Tulalip flag to the same pole that holds the United States and Washington State flags, Marysville School District recognizes Tulalip’s inherent sovereignty as an indigenous nation and acknowledges that the best way forward is in partnership, pulling together.

MSD adopts very first Equity Plan

By Kalvin Valdillez, Tulalip News  

“When I was growing up we did not see ourselves in school,” expressed Quil Ceda Tulalip Elementary Vice-Principal and Tulalip tribal member, Chelsea Craig. “We did not see our people, our way of being. We were expected to check who we were at the door of the school and conform to the colonized system that we were forced to participate in. This policy is the beginning stages of changing that practice. It honors the unique and beautiful communities that each of our students come from. It puts the heavy lifting on the adults to change their practice and their thinking to meet the needs of all of our kids. It interrupts the status quo, that has long-standing shown, does not work for our Native students and other students of color.”

For the first time in history, the Marysville School District (MSD) has adopted an equity policy in an effort to ensure that their students, faculty and families feel safe and supported through their academic careers and time spent within the school district. November 3 marked an important and historic day, as the district took the first step in a long journey. A journey worth striving for where kids can thrive in a comfortable learning environment and simply be themselves without worrying about bullying, harassment, or experiencing educational disparities and barriers based on their culture, ethnicity, religion, gender identity, sexual orientation or socioeconomic status. 

Said Eneille Nelson, MSD Executive Director of Equity and Family Engagement, “This educational equity policy was created by students, parents, community members and staff. It was very important to have the right people at the table thinking about the needs of our students, families and staff of our district. It will serve as the foundation to initiate the necessary sustainable changes for years to come. The policy is just the beginning of the work we have to do, a foundation for us to build upon.”

Over numerous pages, the policy identifies five key areas that MSD will focus on to implement the Equity Action Plan; Human Resources, Teaching and Learning, Leadership and Partnership, Climate and Culture, and Responsibility/Accountability. 

If executed as planned, the district will recruit and hire a more diverse workforce, whom students can identify with, relate to and confide in. Eliminate systemic inequalities in curriculums and educational materials by providing their staff with professional development training and tailoring lessons so their students can see themselves within the curriculum. Build and foster strong relationships with their students, families and local communities, namely the Tulalip Tribes, City of Marysville and Snohomish County, to ensure they have input in major decisions and that their voice is heard and well-represented. Offer a safe and inclusive learning environment where the proper resources are readily available to their students. And hold staff, the school board and the yet-to-be-appointed superintendent accountable by closely monitoring the progress of the policy through annual reports, reviews and surveys – to name a few highlights from the newly established policy.  

“The Marysville School District has never had an equity policy before and we have seen the painful effects on our kids and our community,” stated Liz Gobin, MSD teacher and Tulalip tribal spouse and parent. “Having a comprehensive equity policy holds everyone in the district accountable to ensure that our kids feel safe and that the biases that have existed in the larger community and educational systems will no longer be tolerated.  There have been many feel-good statements about equity over the years but having a formal policy adopted means that there is finally action happening. Along with this initial policy, the advisory teams are continuing to develop the action steps that go along with it, including things like professional development to educate staff, more diverse hiring practices, evaluating discipline data, and holding every person accountable to interrupt racism and biases as they occur.”

She continued, “This Equity policy was created for and belongs to each of our children. I want to encourage every family to use their voice to make sure we keep building on this policy and that we never go backward. As our school board changes and our superintendent search begins, it’s important to remember that what we demand as parents and as a community makes a difference. We need to pay close attention to what is happening and work together to make sure this policy stays at the forefront of all of the work happening in the district.” 

As Liz mentioned, MSD is currently undergoing several changes as the school board welcomes three new directors to the five-seat panel, two of whom have shown opposition to curriculum such as Critical Race Theory and have vocalized they would not support any curriculum that places value on any race, gender or national origin above another. That is why she is urging other parents to get involved as the new policy goes into effect, to ensure that the equity policy is implemented as planned and the needs of MSD students and families hailing from various backgrounds are met. And that their students are also afforded a safe and positive learning environment, as well as celebrated for their differences. 

Chelsea shared, “At QCT we have been working for many years to change the mindset of school, grounded in the traditional values of the Tulalip Tribes. We have been working to build our understanding of race and equity and the role each of us play in creating a learning environment that reflects the community we serve, that honors the beauty that each of our children bring into a very colonized space. MSD passing this policy grounds the much-needed work to heal our Tulalip/Marysville community.” 

Eneille added, “Our next steps will be to create an action plan that will put actions to the areas addressed in our policy. Everyone in our district and community have a part to play in the success of our policy and action plan. We all have to hold each other accountable and not expect one person or group to do all of the heavy lifting. If we work together, this policy and action plan can bring the change many have been waiting and hoping for.”

To view the MSD Eduction Equity Policy please visit:

The district’s current Equity Action Plan can be found at:

For additional information, please contact the Marysville School District at (360) 965-0000.

The legacy of naming Army helicopters after Native Americans

Two members of the Standing Rock Sioux Nation dance in traditional attire around a South Dakota Army National Guard UH 72 Lakota helicopter on June 10, 2012 after a blessing ceremony for the helicopter. The SDNG and the Lakota Nation have partnered together to support the people living on the reservations as well as to help inspire the youth to become active members of the community. (SDNG photo by Sgt. Jacqueline Fitzgerald)

By Micheal Rios, Tulalip News; Photos courtesy U.S. Department of Defense

It’s officially Native American Heritage Month. November’s been federally recognized as such since 1990, when then President George Bush approved a joint resolution making it so. Bringing it local, just days ago Washington State Governor Jay Inslee proclaimed November 2021 as Native American Heritage Month as well.

In his proclamation, Governor Inslee stated Washington joins other states across the nation in celebrating Native American Heritage Month, honoring the unique heritage of this continent’s First People and reaffirming the commitment to respect each Tribe’s sovereignty and cultural identity. 

With November 11 being Veteran’s Day, it’s a timely occasion to drop some knowledge about a not so well-known tactic in which the United States Army honors the unique heritage and cultural identity of Native Americans. 

U.S. Army paratroopers assigned to Attack Company, 1st Battalion, 503rd Infantry Regiment, 173rd Airborne Brigade, conduct sling load operations with a CH-47 Chinook helicopter, from 6-101 GSAB, 101 CAB, Illesheim, Germany, during exercise Eagle Talon, Monte Romano, Italy, Jan 20, 2021. (U.S. Army photo by Elena Baladelli)

Lest we forget, as a cultural demographic Native Americans serve in the armed forces at five times the national average and enlist in the military at the highest per-capita rate of any other group.  The Department of Defense recognizes that today’s military successes depend heavily on the contribution of America’s First People. Thirty-one thousand proud Native American men and women are on active duty today, serving in Iraq, Afghanistan, and elsewhere around the world. 

This proud warrior tradition of Native people is recognized by the Army and manifests itself in a largely unknown and truly unique manner. Public affairs specialist and Defense.Gov author Katie Lange explains that for the past half-century Army helicopters have been named after the spirit, endurance, and warrior ethos of Native Americans.

Apache. Black Hawk. Comanche. Chinook. Kiowa. Lakota. In addition to being Native American tribes or key Native figures, these are also names of highly specialized, military aircraft. Wonder why?

The U.S. military has a long history with Native Americans. Armed conflicts between the two were commonly known as the American Indian Wars and were fought intermittently from the start of colonization and continued into the early 20th century. But Native Americans also served as some of the fiercest fighters for the United States for more than 200 years. In fact, 32 Native Americans have earned the nation’s highest military award, the Medal of Honor.

The tradition of naming helicopters after Native Americans was once an official regulation. That regulation no longer stands, but the tradition continues.

Here’s how it all came about. According to an unnamed Army museum official, the naming convention goes back to before the Air Force split from the Army in 1947, when Army General Hamilton Howze was assigned to Army aviation. His mission was to develop doctrine and the way forward when it came to employing Army aircraft and how they would support warfighters on the ground.

According to the museum official, Howze wasn’t a fan of the names of the first two helicopters – Hoverfly and Dragonfly. So, he laid out instructions for naming the helicopters after their abilities.

Thirty-two OH-58D Kiowa Warriors with the 1st Squadron, 17th Cavalry Regiment, 82nd Combat Aviation Brigade, conduct a flyover during farewell flight, Fort Bragg, N.C., April 15. The flyover serves as a final “thank you” and farewell to the residents of the Fort Bragg and the Fayetteville community. (DOD photo by Kenneth Kassens)

Howze said since the choppers were fast and agile, they would attack enemy flanks and fade away, similar to the way the tribes on the Great Plains fought during the aforementioned American Indian Wars. He decided the next helicopter produced – the well-known H-13 of “M.A.S.H.” fame – would be called the Sioux in honor of the Native Americans who fought Army soldiers in the Sioux Wars and defeated the 7th Calvary Regiment at the Battle of Little Bighorn.

That’s likely how Army Regulation 70-28 was created in 1969. The regulation listed criteria on how popular names would be given to major items of equipment. Name choices had to:

  • Appeal to the imagination without sacrificing dignity.
  • Suggest an aggressive spirit and confidence in the item’s capabilities.
  • Reflect the item’s characteristics including mobility, agility, flexibility, firepower and endurance.
  • Be based on tactical application, not source or method of manufacture.
  • Be associated with the preceding qualities and criteria if a person’s name is proposed.

According to AR 70-28, Army aircraft were specifically categorized as requiring “Indian terms and names of American Indian tribes and chiefs.” Names to choose from were provided by the Bureau of Indian Affairs.

AR 70-28 was eventually rescinded and replaced with policies that didn’t mention that criteria, but it’s clear that the tradition has continued. You only have to look back to 2012 when the Army named its current primary training helicopter, the UH-72A Lakota, after the Lakota tribe of the Great Sioux Nation in North and South Dakota.

On June 10, 2012, Lakota elders ritually blessed two new South Dakota Army National Guard UH-72A Lakotas at a traditional ceremony on the Standing Rock Reservation in North Dakota. Ceremonies like these happened often over the past several decades.

A U.S. Army Blackhawk lands and dismounts Canadian Land forces soldiers of the Royal Canadian Dragoons, 2nd Canadian Mechanized Brigade Group, in the early morning hours of Apr. 16. The unit was on a joint exercise mission with 3rd Battalion, 1st Combat Aviation Brigade, 1st Infantry Division, to clear the area of enemy in the mountainous wooded border region near Lielvarde, Latvia. (Photo by OR-8 Juan Delgado Garnacho)

When presented with this history of naming Army helicopters after Native American Tribes and figures, the Tulalip Veterans Department issued the following statement: 

It’s important for our citizens to know this great history because you really have to make a positive impact for any group, let alone the U.S. military, to create a regulation honoring you by name. This is a special recognition unique to the Native American’s fighting spirit. As Native Americans, we serve in the military at the highest rate per capita. That long-lasting tradition of protecting our families, homelands and cultural lifeways is honored by the Army’s desire to name their helicopters after us.

Disclaimer: “The appearance of U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) visual information does not imply or constitute DoD endorsement.”