The Grand Council of the Crees on Behalf of the Cree Nation of Eeyou Istchee Expresses its Deepest Sympathies on the Passing of Elijah Harper
(Nemaska, Quebec, May 22, 2013) Speaking for the Grand Council of the Crees, Grand Chief Dr. Matthew Coon Come expressed his deepest sympathies to the family of the late Elijah Harper on their profound loss.
"Elijah was a true pioneer and a peaceful warrior on behalf of aboriginal peoples throughout Canada. His courage and his commitment to defending the rights of our peoples was an inspiration to us all. His humility and his quiet determination to do the right thing at a critical moment in the history of Canada, and despite all the pressures on him to do otherwise, mark him as a genuine hero not only for aboriginal peoples but for all Canadians who value justice and honesty.", stated Dr. Coon Come.
Elijah Harper visited the Cree territory of Eeyou Istchee in northern Quebec numerous times and developed many long-lasting friendships, both personal and professional. Most recently, Elijah honoured the Cree Nation by participating in the opening of the Aanischaaukamikw Cree Cultural Institute, an institution devoted to the preservation and promotion of Cree culture, an objective which Elijah wholeheartedly supported and encouraged.
Throughout his life, Elijah's accomplishments made him a vital role model for aboriginal youth across Canada. He demonstrated that there is no worthy goal which cannot be reached and there is no dream which cannot be achieved if there is determination, dedication and commitment to the hard work of realizing them. Elijah will be sadly missed but never forgotten.