COMMENTARY: Expressing gratitude to The Warriors of AniKituhwa

by Jun 14, 2023OPINIONS0 comments


Cherokee Indian Hospital


On behalf of the entire team at Cherokee Indian Hospital, I would like to extend my deepest gratitude and heartfelt appreciation to The Warriors of AniKituhwa for their presence and participation in the ribbon-cutting ceremony for our new men’s home on June 12.

Bo Taylor, foreground right, a member of the Warriors of AniKituhwa, leads the Cherokee Friendship Dance at the ribbon-cutting ceremony for the Men’s Residential Support Home in Cherokee, N.C. on Monday, June 12. Shown, left to right, are – Wolftown Rep. Andrew Oocumma; Yellowhill Rep. T.W. Saunooke; Sheyahshe Littledave, Cherokee Indian Hospital director of public relations; and Taylor. Casey Cooper, Cherokee Indian Hospital chief executive officer and author of this commentary, can be seen in the background left. (SCOTT MCKIE B.P./One Feather photo)

As always, the presence and active involvement of the Warriors left an indelible mark on our community. By joining us in celebrating this momentous occasion, the Warriors have not only honored us with their esteemed talents, but they also played an essential role in grounding our community in its rich cultural heritage and time-honored traditions.

The inclusion of The Warriors in the ribbon-cutting ceremony was a deliberate choice, driven by our commitment to recognizing and embracing the significance of Cherokee culture and tradition. Their participation not only added a touch of grandeur to the event but also reminded us of the resilience, strength, and unity that has sustained our community for generations.

As custodians of Cherokee culture and tradition, the Warriors serve as a powerful reminder of the deep-rooted values and customs that have guided our people throughout history. The ceremonial dance and intentional regalia transported us back to our ancestral roots, evoking a sense of pride, connection, and reverence for our shared heritage. The opportunity for the Warriors to lead all those who attended the ribbon cutting in the Friendship Dance elevated the cultural importance of the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians to partners, many of whom might otherwise have no personal knowledge or connection to our community.

Furthermore, the participation of the Warriors exemplified the close-knit relationship between Cherokee Indian Hospital and the broader Cherokee community. By standing alongside us during this momentous occasion, the Warriors demonstrated their shared support and commitment to the well-being and progress of our people. The Warriors have long been revered as symbols of strength, bravery, and cultural preservation, and their presence at the ribbon-cutting ceremony reaffirmed the importance of our shared goals and commitment to ensuring the prosperity of the next seven generations of the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians.

To the Warriors, we are incredibly grateful for your unwavering dedication to preserving and promoting Cherokee culture. Your participation in the ribbon-cutting ceremony not only added a touch of authenticity but also allowed us to create a meaningful and memorable event that will be etched in the hearts and minds of our community members for years to come. As custodians of Cherokee culture and tradition, you serve as a bridge between generations, ensuring that the invaluable wisdom, customs, and values of our ancestors are not forgotten while simultaneously embracing the future and promoting progress.

Once again, please accept my sincere appreciation for your invaluable contribution to our men’s home ribbon-cutting ceremony. The kind words you shared and your remarkable talents offered inspiration for us to continue our efforts in fostering a strong and vibrant community deeply rooted in its heritage and to preserve our cultural identity while also encouraging us to adapt, innovate, and grow in the face of an ever-changing world.

The Warriors’ commitment to cultural preservation and promotion and their willingness to participate in community events such as the ribbon cutting allows the Cherokee people to move forward with confidence, knowing that we carry the torch of our ancestors while charting a path towards a brighter future. The Warriors of AniKituhwa exemplify the harmonious balance between honoring our past and embracing the challenges and opportunities of tomorrow.

We look forward to future collaborations and remain grateful for your ongoing support. May the legacy of The Warriors of AniKituhwa continue to shine brightly and guide our community toward a prosperous future.

Cooper is the chief executive officer of the Cherokee Indian Hospital.