Russell Means: Last of the Mohicans star mourned by
1,000 Native Americans in traditional 12-HOUR memorial
along historic pass
South Dakota: In the company of more than 1,000
mourners, a riderless horse escorted the remains of
Russell Means to his first of four memorials.
The funeral procession was led by 21 horses through a
stretch of the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation where Means
to a 12-hour service at Little Wound High School, the
smell of burning sage, sweetgrass and cedar served as a
spiritual cleansing and healing, honoring the
Also remembered for his role in the film The Last of the Mohicans, Means had been battling advanced esophageal cancer.
Invitations to his memorial described him as an "Oglala Lakota patriot and freedom fighter."
were offered outside with a drum and honor songs, then
he was escorted in with his wife, Pearl and all his
children and grandchildren," Mean's sister-in-law
Natalie Hand said.
The ceremony will go on into the night. After that, his
family and close relatives among the Oglalas will be
carrying his ashes up to the Black Hills and scattering
his ashes at Yellow Thunder Camp."
a leader of all tribes—a spiritual leader—and a
warrior," Crow Dog said. "He was not originally a
warrior, but all the injustice that happened to the
American Indians and Canadian Indians—the system made
him into a
just like Crazy Horse."
Means felt his most important accomplishment was founding of the Republic of Lakotah and the "re-establishment of our freedom to be responsible" as a sovereign nation inside the borders of the United States.
Village © Gina Boltz
Thank you to ALL the wonderful individuals, friends,
organizations, groups, news services and websites who share or donate their research, work, time and
talents to make Native Village possible