January 9th, 2014 Last Updated on: January 9th, 2014
The story is marked in history — on Dec. 29, 1890, a band of Miniconjou Lakota led by Chief Spotted Elk, renamed Big Foot by the U.S. government, was massacred at Wounded Knee. But less is known about the survivors, all of whom witnessed the death and wounding of men, women and children before scattering across the prairie of the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation.
Chase Iron Eyes and Joe Brings Plenty, both descendants of relatives who died in the massacre, started the Wounded Knee Survivors Run last year, asking runners to join them as they trace the route taken by the survivors — 180 miles northeast to the South Dakota town called Howe, the location of the Takini School, a rural K-12 institution with a name that means “survivor” or “one who lives on.”
“We don’t run to commiserate,” Iron Eyes said. “It’s a heavy thing and a tragic thing, there’s no skirting that … . But it needs to be a scar, not an open wound.”
Read more about the relay on Al Jazeera America.
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