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Mourners line the streets to pay tribute to Esquimalt Nation Chief Andy Thomas – CHEK News

by pmnationtalk on April 12, 201873 Views

April 11, 2018

Seenupin, or Andy Thomas, the hereditary Chief of the Esquimalt Nation for 47 years,  died unexpectedly at home on Saturday at the age of 70.

He was remembered on as a champion of indigenous rights and was celebrated for his work in the community.

“He was a champion for our rights, for our territory,” his nephew Rob Thomas said.

Thomas says his uncle took on the federal government in his fight to have treaties honoured that were signed by his community in the 19th century. This dispute included the land where the B.C. provincial legislature sits.

Chief Thomas was also praised for promoting Indigenous curriculum in schools “bringing our heritage and our culture, our Coast Salish ways to the school system, to the educational system.”

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