TRAVERSE CITY, MICHIGAN – A tribal community in northern Michigan is mourning the tragic death of tribal member, Monica Anderson, 28, who was allegedly murdered by her non-Native boyfriend on Tuesday night.
Monica Anderson, 28,
allegedly murdered by her boyfriend.
Members of the Grand Traverse Band of Ottawa & Chippewa Indians, based in Peshawbestown, Michigan, have been stopping by to pay their respects at the home of her mother, Sandy Anderson, who is a former Grand Traverse Band Councilor.
Family and tribal members have been at the Anderson home to visit and to gather around the sacred fire on the brisk fall nights to remember Monica, who leaves behind two children: daughter, Gnaajiwi, 9, and son, Cassius, 3.
“The community is in shock,” said Linda Woods, a respected elder and veteran of the U.S. Air Force. “It is hard to imagine the pain her family must be suffering right now. We are a close community and this has been very shocking that this would happen to one of our own.”
The Grand Traverse Band tribal community is a closed-knit community where the young mothers teach their children to dance traditionally in powwows. Monica was proud her daughter, Gnaajiwi learned to traditional dance.
“This is a tight community with a group of young ladies who are very close,” commented Steven Perry to the Native News Online on Friday night. “And, Monica was one of them.”
A loving mother leaves behind two children.
“She was one of my P-town kids. I met her when I administered the Tribal school. She must have been only 11-years old when I met her. The Anderson family is a large Grand Traverse Band family. I have kept in touch with ‘my kids.’ I talked with her recently about financing her bakery. I was honored to know her. It was a tragedy,” continued Perry.
“She liked to bake cakes and cupcakes,” commented her cousin, Angie Shonis. “She was getting really good at it.”
Anderson’s funeral service is scheduled for Saturday at 1 p.m. in the Strongheart Center in Peshawbestown.
A memorial fund has been set up at the Members Credit Union. Payments can be made to the Monica June Anderson Memorial. Checks can be mailed to the Members Credit Union at PO Box 795, Traverse City, Michigan 49685-0795.