July 5th, 2015 Last Updated on: July 5th, 2015
Edward Harper (Plains Cree) is the son of Korean War veteran Vern Harper. Growing up in a military home he was naturally fascinated by how Native people can serve in the Armed Forces, risking their lives for the governments that have systematically oppressed them. As stated on the website, he hopes the Honour & Hope Project will be a way to recognize the many ways in which Native people have served and honored our traditions and at the same time attempt to better understand the reasons so many of them feel the need to participate in wars that were otherwise not meant to benefit them as a people.
Our people have a long and honorable history as warriors and protectors of the land, and for over a century our people have also shown their courage by serving in the Armed Forces of this country.
Our goal with this project is to document, gather, honour and share the stories of those who served, the ones that have left us and those who are still here with us. This is the beginning of a journey of sorts for us, a journey into the past and a look at the present, so that our future may never forget.
The purpose of the project is to create the following:
1. A searchable video and image archive of personal stories of First Nations warriors who served in the armed forces
2. A book in print of all stories gathered
3. A full length documentary to be screened and shown
What we want to achieve is a collection of stories that speak about First Nations warrior traditions, the reasons they served/are serving and research the varied and personal reasons for their involvement – and hope to this way honour and maintain this rich history before its gone.
If you know any veterans that might be interested in telling their story, Harper is currently looking for volunteers. To find out how to participate please email: [email protected] For more information you can visit http://honourandhope.com/.
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