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WARRIOR UP!!! Sister Nations Color Guard

Posted By PowWows.com June 10th, 2014 Last Updated on: June 10th, 2014

In the midst of Native American Night for the Atlanta Dream, a group of strong and beautiful Warriors took center stage. Honoring the USA, the flag and cheering for Shoni Schimmel, Sister Nations Color Guard displayed grace and elegance. As they travel to powwows and events, these Veterans demonstrate the power and beauty of Native women and culture.  Recently, two of their members, Carisa Gonzalez and Angel Young, shared the story of this special group of Warriors.

Sister Nations Color Guard!!!

Sister Nations Color Guard!!! (Credit: Native American Inter Tribal Mingle Stop)

Sister Nations Color Guard honors Shoni Schimmel at the Atlanta Dream's Native American Night!

Sister Nations Color Guard honors Shoni Schimmel at the Atlanta Dream's Native American Night!

Interview by Dr. Dawn Karima, PhD, Native American Cultural Editor

Sister Nations Color Guard Warriors, Michela Alire, Angel Young and Carisa Gonzalez with Powwows.com's Dr. Dawn Karima

Sister Nations Color Guard Warriors, Michela Alire, Angel Young and Carisa Gonzalez with Powwows.com's Dr. Dawn Karima

DK) Thank you for your service! Tell us about yourselves, please?

CG) My name is Carisa Yazzie Gonzalez. I'm originally out of the Navajo Nation out of New Mexico. that's where I grew up all of my life until I enlisted into the US Army in 1995 and then, I got out in 2006.

AY) My name is Angel Young and I am also a Veteran of the US Army. I enlisted in  2001 and I got out in 2005. I'm from Standing Rock Reservation, which is a reservation located on the North Dakota and South Dakota border. I grew up in this area. I've lived all over the US, but home is always going to be North Dakota…no matter how cold it is.

DK) I'm glad that the two of you are visiting with me today, because you are so regal and distinguished. You do truly wonderful things. Carissa, will you tell us about them?

CG) We formed up a Color Guard a couple of years ago. Nothing official, no bylaws or anything. It just kinda started as a Sisterhood through Friendship and stuff. We just kinda came together because we like going into the powwow circle and we love dancing and our people and stuff like that and we've always admired and had much respect for all our Veterans who are out there Color Guarding and we wanted to do the same thing, so we put ourselves out there and we extended our hands to whomever wanted to join, but I think our main priority in our group is really friendship and stuff that brought us all together from different tribes, different branches. We have 15 total females in our group right now.

DK) And now you are SISTER NATIONS COLOR GUARD! How does it feel to be part of an all-female Color Guard?

AY) It's an extreme honor. We based our Color Guard upon friendship. We pretty much call each other Sisters. We've all pretty much adopted each other as Sisters. We are extremely close, we all get along great and we mesh very well together. To me, it's an honor, because we not only honor our heritage, but we also honor our Veterans, but also our female Veterans, who are often forgotten. That's the reason why we do it, to bring the awareness that there are female Veterans out there. We do so many other things besides Color Guarding. We do a lot of community service, we help on our reservations with fundraising and we try to make an impact upon Indian Country.

DK) Marvelous! Thank you for your service…then and now! And thank you for creating unity and bringing our Native People together. What are some of the Native nations represented in Sister Nations Color Guard?

CG) A few of us are from the Navajo nation, some are from the Ute. We have Northern Cheyenne, Arapaho, Lakota Sioux,  Ojibwe, Standing Rock, Three Affiliated Tribes as well.

 

The Beautiful Warriors of Sister Nations Color Guard!!!

The Beautiful Warriors of Sister Nations Color Guard!!!

 

DK) Whenever I see you, I feel a wonderful glow. You're so radiant! What kind of responses do you get when you travel?

AY) Pretty much a lot of handshaking and people thanking us for serving. We try to stay humble about it. It's just something that we love to do. We don't look for any kind of recognition. It's just something that we love to do. We don't look for attention. We are a very humble group of Ladies. It's just something that we're proud of…we're proud of our heritage, we're proud of that we served. It honors us, it  completely humbles us, when we see  elderly Ladies come up and hug us and tell us thank us for our service and thank us for all we've done. That feeling right there is the best feeling you can get ever, just being recognized.

Visit SISTER NATIONS COLOR GUARD on Facebook to learn more about this fantastic group of Warriors!!!

Visit SISTER NATIONS COLOR GUARD on Facebook to learn more about this fantastic group of Warriors!!!

DK) Marvelous! Do you feel that being a part of Sister Nations Color Guard brings you closer to our people and closer to our culture and traditions?

CG) Yes, I do. Many of us in our group share our cultures because we all come from different cultures and we all have different tribes and different cultures. My husband is still in the military, so I still move around here and there, so being a part of the Color Guard kind of brought me back into the powwow circle…back to dancing. Even though I've always been in touch with my Navajo/Dine, my traditional cultural way, but that's a different way, so this brought me back to dancing.  Sister Nations Color Guard brought a lot of us females back to dancing, because a lot of us used to dance before we moved away and joined the military.  That means a lot for a lot of us. Just like home.

DK) Yes.  One of the greatest things I enjoy about being Native is that no matter where we are, as long as we are with other Natives, we are home. Thank you for your service and for representing our beautiful Native people and culture with such magnificence and generosity.

Sister Nations Color Guard is on Facebook!! Learn more about these honorable women!  (Credit: NDNSPORTS.COM)

Sister Nations Color Guard is on Facebook!! Learn more about these honorable women!
(Credit: NDNSPORTS.COM)

Dr Dawn Karima won a Native American Music Award for her cd, THE DESIRE OF NATIONS and has released a new cd, THE STARS OF HEAVEN. Both are available from iTUnes, Amazon,CDBABY and Writtenheritage.com!!!

 


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Lynne Holman

I have been working with Carise Yazzie-Gonzales regarding the Denver American Indian Festival. I need to speak to her, but cannot find her where I can usually leave a message. Can someone from the group contact me? I need your permission to use a picture please

Eva jean felihkatubbee

Would like info on where there is a native women veterans group in the Riverside ca area,

David Irthum

Thank you Women Warriors for your faithful and honorable service to the people of the USA!

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