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  Mr. Joe Derocher   Listen to the audio introduction Listen to an introduction to Mr Joe Derocher by Joseph Naytowhow
  >>Mr. Joe Derocher

>>Flying Dust First Nation
Cree (Nêhiyawêwin)
Sharing
wîcihitowin

1. "This story is about the time a long time ago when my mother decided that she would invite me to travel with her to the pilgrimage at Lac Ste. Anne, Alberta. Something must have concerned her to want me to go with her. So she surprised me the day she came to pick me up. I told her that I had no money and that I was suffering from having drank a little too much alcohol the night before. My mother assured me that she would take care of everything and that I need not worry. I finally gave in to my mother‘s request and got ready to go to Lac Ste. Anne.

1. ôma âcimowin kayâs kî-ispayin, nikâwiy awa niwîsâmik ta-wîcêwak manitow- sâkahikanihk (Lac Ste Anne) isi. kîkwây êtikwê ê-pakosêyimit, kâ-nitawêyihtahk ta- wîcêwak. mâcika nikoskohik kâ-pê-nâsit, ê-pê-naskwênit. niwihtamawâw êkâ ê- osôniyâmiyân êkwa mîna ê-ahkosipêyân, ê-kî-minihkwêyân otâkosîhk isi. êkosi nikâwiy nititik namôya katâc ta-mâmitonêyihtamân, misawâc wiya kahkiyaw kîkway ê-wî- wawêyîstahk. piyisk êkosi niwâpamik nikâwiy. niwawêyîn manitow-sâkahikanihk ôma ta- itohtêyân.

2. That was our Indian way. If you've got something, you give it to someone in need. We never charged anybody anything. Those were the days, I was taught to welcome anyone that came to my home; anyone that needed a place to sleep, food to eat or a friend to talk to. I would never close the door to anyone wanting this kind of support. It was important to show that you had a good heart.

2. êkwa ôma kinêhiyâwiwinaw; kîspin kîkway ê-ayâyan, kimiyâw ana awiyak kâ- kwêtamât. namôya wihkâc awiyak kîkway ohci-akihtamawâw. êkosi mâna pêci-nâway ê- kî-wihtamâkawiyâhk. ta-miyo-otôtêmâyâhk awiyak kâ-pê-kiyokêt nîkinâhk. ahpô awiyak kâ-kwêtamât ta-nipât, ta-kapêsihâyâhk, ta-asamâyâhk awiyak, kâ-nohtêkatêt. ta-miyo- pamihâyâhk pikw âna awiyak. miywâsin mistahi ta-nôkohtât awiyak ê-miyotêhêt.

3. Along the way I needed to have something stronger than pop to alleviate the hangover I had from what I'd drank the night before and asked if we could stop at Smokey Lake, the next town we were approaching. To my surprise my mother brought out a bottle of wine. She had anticipated my request of wanting to stop at every town that we would pass on the highway. I gratefully took the bottle of wine and we proceeded on our journey. Surprised by my mother's actions I remained quiet for some time.

3. ispayiw ati êkwa, êkâ ê-kî-têpipêyân ahpô sîwâpoy. mistahi ninâh-nohtêyâpâkwân êyikohk ê-ahkosipêyân. nikakwêcihkêmon êkwa mahti kaskâpahtêw-sâkahikanihk (Smokey Lake) ta-kî-ati-nakîyâhk. ê-wî-atâwêyân kîkway ta-minihkwêyân. nikoskohik nikâwiy, ê-pê-miyit pêyak môtêyâpisk sôminâpoy. êkosi êtikwê ê-kî-itêyihtahk, ôcênâsihk ta-pê-nâh-nakîyân. nitatamihik, sêmâk nitotinên anima sôminâpoy. nikoskohik awa nikâwiy kâ-itôtahk, êkosi kiyâm nikiyâmapin.

4. As we made our way to Lac Ste. Anne we saw a man who was hitchhiking. As I mentioned earlier, anyone needing help must be taken care of and so the opportunity presented itself. This man looked like he needed help so we picked him up. Opening the grub box, my mother handed the man bannock, dry meat and tea. He looked very grateful for the thoughtful gesture.

4.kêtahtawê kâ-wâpamâyâhk pêyak nâpêw ê-ati-mostohtêt. kâ-itwêyân oskac awiyak kâ-kwêtamât, sêmâk ta-wîcihiht ta-nâkatohkêhk. ispayin êkwa êkosi ta-nâkatohkêyâhk awa. ninaskwênânân awa nâpêw ê-pôsihâyâhk. sêmâk yohtênam nîmâwiwat nikâwiy ê- asamât pahkwêsikana, kahkêwak êkwa nihtiy minahêw. mitoni atamihêw.

5. As we continued on our journey he explained that the previous night he had been robbed of all his earnings. He was a chef and had been working on a six month cooking contract. That was why he was hitchhiking back to Edmonton. It was a sad situation for this man.

5. ati-âcimow awa nâpêw, êsa tipiskohk isi ê-kî-kimotamâht kahkiyaw osôniyâma. ê-kî- paminawasot êsa nikotwâsik pîsim, ê-kî-atoskêt. êkwa ôma kâ-pê-mostohtêt kâwi Edmonton isi. mitoni nikitimâkihtawânân.

6. As we travelled the hitchhiker and I finished the bottle of wine. It did wonders for my hangover. We were coming to the town of St. Albert and had to turn off to continue our journey towards Lac Ste. Anne. I wanted to have a final drink with my newly found friend so we pulled into town and stopped."

6. piyisk êkwa nitati-kitânân anima pêyak môtêyâpisk sôminâpoy awa nâpêw asici. mitoni êkwa nimiyo-nanâtawihon. cîki êkwa St. Albert ê-ayâyâhk, paskêmon mêskanaw manitow-sâkahikanihk isi. ninohtê-wîci-minihkwêmâw pêyakwâw awa nitôtêm pwâmayîs paskêwêhitoyâhk. êkosi nitati-nakînân ôtênâhk (St. Albert).

7. After having a drink, it was time for us to part ways. We all gathered in a circle to say our farewell. The hitchhiker suddenly began to cry, overwhelmed by the treatment he had received. Moved by the man's gesture of appreciation each of us in turn began to shed tears. It must have been a sight to behold.

7. ê-kî-minihkwêyâhk êkwa êkosi ispayiw ta-paskêwêhitoyâhk. kahkiyaw êkwa nimâmawipayinân ê-atamiskawâyâhk awa nâpêw. sisikoc kâ-mâtot ê-môskwêyihtahk ê- miyo-pamihiht. piyisk kahkiyaw nimôskomikonân. mâskôc anihi kî-wâpamikawiyâhk, tânisi êtikwê ê-isinâkohcikêyâhk.

8. Just before we left, I gave the hitchhiker the last four dollars of the six my mother had given me. He insisted on returning the favour saying that he would send the money back to us as soon as he had some money. I told him to never mind paying it back and that there would come a day when he might run into somebody else who was stuck like he was. I told him to give that person the money. Let him use it on the way he needed to, like for catching a bus home, buying a meal or paying for a coffee, and to tell him the same thing too - about passing the favour on. After I finished speaking we all went our separate ways, happy to have helped someone in need.

8. êkosi pwâmayîs ê-sipwêhtêt êkwa nimiyâw awa nâpêw nêwâpisk ê-kî-ayâwak. nitikonân misawâc kâwi ê-wî-tipahamâkoyâhk mayaw osôniyâmici. namôya katâc nititâw, mâka ta-âsônamawât anihi sôniyâsa kotaka awiya. ta-âpacihât pikw îsi wî-itâpacihâci, êkwa mîna ta-wihtamawât pêyakwan êkosi ta-itôtamiyit, ta-âsônamâkêt awiya, kotaka ta- miyât kwêtamâyici. êkosi pîkiskwêyâhk êkwa êkosi nisipwêhtânân ê-miywêyihtamâhk ê-kî- wîcihâyâhk awiyak ê-kwêtamât.

9. While my mother was alive she would remind me of that time and would say, "I wonder where the money you gave away is now?"

9. mêkwâc nikâwiy ê-pah-pimâtisit, nikâh-kiskisomik mâna êkwa ôma êkwa mâna ê-kî- itwêt, "tânitê êtikwê êkwa ôma ana sôniyâs kâ-kî-mêkiyan?"

 
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Biography ~ Mr. Joe Derocher

Joe Derocher was born at Island Hill, SK on April 8, 1917 where he lived with his grandfather on a small ranch across the river from Island Lake. Living in tents initially, he and his family eventually moved into a wood frame house.

Their main source of food came from what nature provided; with his father hunting and trapping seasonally. Their hunting grounds provided for them until he was nine years old. His family then moved to Flying Dust First Nation and Joe's father continued to trap south of Meadow Lake after they relocated. The values of honesty, sharing and respect for Elders were values taught to him by his father and mother.

As a young boy, Joe learned to trap muskrats by going out to the trapline and watching his father. As a past time, Joe played with bows and arrows with his friends. They would compete to see who could shoot their arrow the farthest and the highest.

Joe married Mary Rose Bear and together they had eight children; five daughters and three sons. Two of their sons have since passed away.

Although Joe was baptized a Roman Catholic, his first spiritual practice was based on Cree culture. He attended Round Dances, Feasts, Sacred Pipe Ceremonies and Cree cultural camps.

Prior to his passing (in the winter of 1997) Joe undertook to get his name reinstated; this name was given to his grandfather by the community but was changed to Derocher later by census takers. Those who knew Kamiyoh-pikehkot will remember his kind demeanor and his willingness to share whatever he had with any traveling visitor that needed a place to eat or camp.

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Flying Dust First Nation

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ElderSpeak
Production/Technical
Research Assistant

Kopahawakenam
"dust flying up"
Cree

Flying Dust First Nation
8001 Flying Dust Reserve
Meadow Lake, Saskatchewan
S9X 1T8
Phone : (306)236-4437
Fax : (306)236-3373

Scott Bear

 
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