The Sauk-Suiattle Indian Tribal Acceptance of Washington’s
Medal of Valor to the Tribe
March 18, 2015 at Olympia, Washington
As a small sovereign nation of American Indians, the Sauk-Suiattle Indian Tribe of Darrington, Washington, shares the belief of all our tribal nations, that the Earth is our Mother and that the Creator resides beyond the skies and within our own beings. While we strive to protect our Mother Earth, so does she shelter us in so many ways from harm.
But there are times when the simple shifting of her garment may catch us in her movements and we are harmed. No one can explain the unnatural land slide event and we are shocked and saddened that our friends and neighbors of Oso, Washington lost their lives in such a massive shift of the earth. There were families, mothers and fathers, grandparents and Aunts and Uncles and so many precious children. And there were visiting individuals who were traveling through the area.
We performed our very sacred smudging and “feeding the River” ceremonies in reverence of our mother and to offer gratitude to the Creator that these lives were shared with us for a time. We are humbled by the honor bestowed by the Legislature and Governor of this great state of Washington recognizing our assistance in that horrible hour of devastation.
We are all small communities who live in the valleys of these beautiful mountains. We can most respectfully honor the memories of the precious lost ones, by working together to build a strong and inviting community for the world to come and see and share and to forever implant the importance of the names and lives of those who have moved on to another world.
We dedicate this honor you have bestowed on us, to the lives lost; to those who worked so diligently to save lives and recover those who suffered death. And in their honor we pledge to work diligently with our neighboring communities, cities and governments to build a bright world of earthly beauty and a healthy human spirit.
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