A Tribute to Charles Silver Wolf and Native American Heritage

Charles Silver Wolf was my friend. He died a couple of months ago and I found that out only earlier this month. He was a Native American/American Indian, and I find it appropriate to write this tribute to him during this Native American Heritage Month of November.

Silver Wolf, as I called him, was a mild mannered individual who had a calm and giving spirit. I met him a few years ago when I joined the Turtle Island Dream Keepers – a Native American Group that meets here at MCCC every month. Silver Wolf would bring me symbolic Native American gifts from time to time and gifted me with a leather bound collector’s edition copy of the book, Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee by Dee Brown. The book recounts the struggles encountered by American Indians as their land was being settled between 1860 and 1890. After reading almost half of the book, I was unable to read any further because of the violence perpetrated against American Indian women and children. I just had to stop reading it. He inscribed a note in the book that read, “To Kojo, my friend and brother, Charles Silver Wolf.” He will be missed.

I remember my conversations with Silver Wolf were educational, edifying, and illuminating.  He was a gentle and caring soul and was always willing to impart knowledge in a kind and understanding manner. Silver Wolf was a member of our county-wide Diversity Committee and was always willing to share his thoughts and knowledge in a non-accusatory manner.

As we celebrate Native American Heritage Month this November, we have a display in the hallway of the A Building.  Silver Wolf used to provide the material for that display and decorated it himself every year. We found out of his death when we reached out to him for display material. May his soul rest in peace.  There will be two presentations this week on Native American Heritage here at MCCC, please check our website and email for details.

When I found out he had died, I called his wife, who told me that he had been in ill health for some time and died in his sleep. He asked that no obituary or announcement be printed and was cremated per his wishes.

Silver Wolf is no longer with us physically, but he is with us in spirit as we celebrate his life and legacy and the heritage of Native Americans this month and every month of the year.

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