Mohican

RIP Mohican, Oneida, Brothertown Medicine Woman and Pipe Carrier Eleanor (Monteen) Soto

Mohican, Oneida, Brothertown Medicine Woman, Pipe Carrier, and Water Protector.
Eleanor Monteen Soto’s son and Wenona Gardner’s brother Mario Soto

I just found out that my mom just passed away and I have to make funeral arrangements out of town. Our reservation is up north four hours from Milwaukee. Traditionally we turn off cellphones and computers and go into Ceremony in a sacred fire for three days in mourning.
My mom was more than my mom and teacher we were best friends staying up all night talking about Ceremony and genealogy, and fighting for our Brothertown Tribe to regain Federal Recognition! She was a Water Protector, Environmental Activist, Rainbow Warrior, and so much more! I can not stop listening to Native American Music sobbing telling the family the news and gathering my large family and three tribes to come to the sacred fire!
Thanks to my Mom she gave me the Indian name Wabun Anung which means Morning Star. At my Indian naming ceremony in August 3, 1990 in a cabin by a lake in Illinois my Mom shared her vision for me was that despite all the trauma I suffered from incest from my father from ages 1 years old – 15 years old, running away from home because nobody believed me and would make it stop, testifying in court against my father who was facing 10 years in prison and a $30,000 fine resulting in him getting a felony sexual assault conviction, which he became a registered sex offender for life, went to jail, and losing his job at Milwaukee Public Schools around children, resulting in me being sexually assaulted in foster care by a 26 year old foster brother, and being placed on suicide watch at 16 at DePaul hospital resulting in a PTSD diagnosis and being put on disability. Mom said despite all of that I was still a bright shining light 🔆in a sea of darkness. Mom told me I am a sign of Hope a coming a New Dawn. That was why my Mom gave me the sacred ceremonial name Morning Star. And I have dedicated my entire life to upload that light in everything I do to live up to the responsibility of the name she bestowed upon me. 
I am also grateful that mom made me her Medicine Woman Apprentice. Together we ran ceremonies for the community including Healing Circles, Talking Circles, Prayer Circles, and Pipe Ceremonies. When Mom and I found out that Jeffrey Dahmer had murdered and eaten my Oneida cousin Jaime Doxtator Mom and I together lead a Sacred Mourning Ceremony in Milwaukee for the Milwaukee Indian Community to address the outrage of one of our own was cannibalized and together we grieved this loss. Mom and I sang for all 3 Native American Churches the Congregation of the Great Spirit Church, Congregation Great Spirit Lutheran Church, and Native American Methodist Church with the Oneida Intertribal Singers. Mom and I together taught children in Milwaukee Public Schools, Shorewood Schools, and Boys and Girls Native American Culture through Native Dance. Mom and I did genealogy work for Mohican, Oneida, and Brothertown relatives especially using our geneaology work to fight for Brothertown Tribe to regain Federal Recognition! Thanks to my Mom she taught me our tribal Languages which lead me to became a Language Activist for my Native people where I represented my tribes at the Breath of Life Archival Institute of Indigenous Languages in Washington DC where I searched for my tribal languages in the National Archives, Library of Congress, American Indian Museum, and Smithsonian searching through hundreds of 100 year old documents. Mom taught me to be a Water Protector, Environmental Activist, and for 10 years an Environment Engineer studying our sacred water ways as a member of the American Indian Science Engineering Society and GUEST Program at UWM with Professor Rose Daitsman.
Mom was a true warrior and she taught me to fight for our rights and for Mother Earth! I owe everything to her!
Thank you Mom I will Always Eternally Be Grateful and Love.
Wenona Gardner
White Turtle Rainbow
Milwaukee, Wisconsin 53233

Eleanor Monteen Soto’s Daughter Wenona Gardner (Photo: White Turtle Rainbow/ Wenona Gardner)
Morning Star Wabun Anung Indian Name Vision by Eleanor Monteen Soto for her Daughter Wenona Gardner given in naming ceremony August 3, 1990 in a cabin by a lake in Illinois with Ojibwe Language Naming Giver who conducted Wenona’s Indian Naming Ceremony by Potawatomi Cultural Teacher Earl Meshigaud (Logo created by Wenona Gardner)
Mohican – 7 A circle to learn Mohican and Genealogy created by Mohican Wenona Gardner May 20, 2000 celebrating 19 years. (Mohican-7 Logo created by Mohican Wenona Gardner )
Mohican Pow Wow August 2016 (Photo:White Turtle Rainbow/ Wenona Gardner)
Mohican Pow Wow August 2016 (Photo:White Turtle Rainbow/ Wenona Gardner)
Mohican Wenona Gardner in front of Mohican Flag in Bowler, WI (Photo:White Turtle Rainbow/Wenona Gardner)
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3 thoughts on “RIP Mohican, Oneida, Brothertown Medicine Woman and Pipe Carrier Eleanor (Monteen) Soto”

  1. My favorite thing about your mother is that she helped you see that although you had a traumatic and rough past, you can still be a bright star. What a wonderful wise woman. May God bless her and your family, and comfort all of you in this difficult time. Amen.

    Liked by 1 person

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