- By Native News Online Staff
Retired U.S. Navy combat pilot and NASA astronaut, current U.S. Sen. Mark Kelly (D-AZ) paid a visit to the Navajo Nation on Veterans Day to commemorate Veterans Day during a live-streamed event at Veterans Memorial Park in Window Rock, Ariz., the capital of the Navajo Nation.
The senator attended in-person a ceremony in the Navajo Nation Veterans Memorial Park in Window Rock, Ariz., the capital of the Navajo Nation. He was greeted by Navajo Nation Jonathan Nez.
Want more Native News? Get the free daily newsletter today.
Sen. Kelly said he wanted to be on the Navajo Nation on Veterans Day because he understands the long and proud history of military service that the Navajo people have provided for so many years. He also spoke about the need for the federal government to provide more support and services for all veterans.
During his address, President Nez delivered a message of appreciation to all Navajo veterans, their families, and their communities. He also acknowledged Gold Star Mothers and Families who have lost their loved ones during military service.
"It is my honor to recognize the thousands of Navajo veterans who have served our country in every branch of the Armed Services,” President Nez said.
“We cannot celebrate this special day without acknowledging our Navajo Code Talkers, who used our sacred language, the words of our ancestors, to help win World War II. We pray for them and all of their loved ones. Today is a time to be proud of who we are as Diné people, to pay tribute to all of the men and women who serve our country, and to honor and remember those who gave their lives for our freedom and our country,” President Nez said.
The ceremony was live streamed on the Navajo Naton's YouTube channel.
In addition to attending the Veterans Day ceremony, Sen. Kelly was welcomed by Speaker Seth Damon and members of the 24th Navajo Nation Council to the capital of the largest sovereign nation in the United States. The senator toured the Council Chambers and responded to questions from delegates.
The leadership meeting included topics covering Arizona redistricting plans, public safety issues, the protection of the Chaco Canyon National Historic Park, and the Build Back Better Act being negotiated by Congress.
“Thank you for inviting me to the Navajo Nation and into these sacred chambers,” said Senator Mark Kelly (Arizona). “The recent infrastructure bill passed by Congress will be signed into law by President Biden.This act includes funds for tribal water rights settlements and a large allocation for water projects across Indian Country. We have been focused in the Senate on projects that will rebuild our country and lift up all Americans, which includes our tribal nations.”
More Stories Like ThisNative News Weekly (June 3, 2023): D.C. Briefs
House Passes Bipartisan Debt Ceiling Deal; How Native American Members of Congress Voted
History Made as First Navajo Appointed U.S. Federal Judge in California
California Bill Aims to Increase State Funding for Tribal Housing
Navajo Nation Leaders Recognized the Fallen on Memorial Day
Native News is free to read.
We hope you enjoyed the story you've just read. For the past dozen years, we’ve covered the most important news stories that are usually overlooked by other media. From the protests at Standing Rock and the rise of the American Indian Movement (AIM), to the ongoing epidemic of Murdered and Missing Indigenous People (MMIP) and the past-due reckoning related to assimilation, cultural genocide and Indian Boarding Schools.
Our news is free for everyone to read, but it is not free to produce. That’s why we’re asking you to make a donation to help support our efforts. Any contribution — big or small — helps. Most readers donate between $10 and $25 to help us cover the costs of salaries, travel and maintaining our digital platforms. If you’re in a position to do so, we ask you to consider making a recurring donation of $12 per month to join the Founder's Circle. All donations help us remain a force for change in Indian Country and tell the stories that are so often ignored, erased or overlooked.
Donate to Native News Online today and support independent Indigenous journalism. Thank you.