Kent State Community Celebrates Native American Heritage and Veterans

More than 65 members of the Kent State community came together for a Celebration of Native American Heritage and Veterans on Saturday Nov. 12, 2022, at the E. Timothy Moore Student Multicultural Center.  

The celebration was hosted by the E. Timothy Moore Student Multicultural Center, in collaboration with the Center for Adult and Veteran Services. 

“The goal of this event was to honor our Native American students, faculty, staff, and community members while also honoring our Veterans,” said Michael Daniels, Ph.D., director of the E. Timothy Moore Student Multicultural Center. “We wanted to educate people on cultural traditions within the Native American and Indigenous cultures, and we wanted to intentionally highlight some of the connections to the veteran community.” 

The celebration provided information about the important role of Native American Code Talkers, who served in World Wars I and II by providing coded communication for the U.S. military and its allies. Nell Orndorf, an elder in the Native American community, shared a brief history of Code Talkers, while also sharing her family ties to the veteran community. 

Aside from the Code Talkers, Native Americans have served in the Armed Forces at five times the national average, according to the National Indian Council on Aging

A celebration of Native American heritage and veterans took place Nov. 12, 2022.

James Pido, another Native American presenter at the celebration, shared his experience with Warriors Journey Home, an organization that offers support, education and healing to members of the military during their service and return home and their families. 

Pido said the group provided him with a community after he returned home from Iraq. 

Additionally, presenters talked about how Native American traditions are used in welcoming, re-integration, and healing for soldiers, veterans and service members returning from war or conflict.  

The celebration also included a drumming and dance circle, a quilt presentation and an acknowledgment of Native American artifacts. Lunch was served and included three sisters' soup made of squash, maze and beans; wild rice salad; roasted turkey; berry-mint sauce and black walnuts; corn husk bread and fried bread. 

For more information about Native American Heritage Month, which is celebrated throughout the month of November, go to https://nativeamericanheritagemonth.gov/about/. 

POSTED: Wednesday, November 16, 2022 12:00 AM
Updated: Friday, January 27, 2023 12:06 PM
WRITTEN BY:
April McClellan-Copeland