ST LOUIS -- Native Americans walking across America on the five-month Longest Walk 4 Return to Alcatraz arrived in St Louis late today and received a surprise message from longtime imprisoned Native American activist Leonard Peltier.
Peltier told the walkers, "In our stories among my people, we say that at times like this, an eagle or a hawk will visit, to see what you are doing. We as Native people know that not only are they visiting to see what you are doing, but they have been sent to collect the thoughts and prayers of the people, to carry them back to the Creator."
The long walkers include two Native American young adults walking across America for the third time. Lisa Peake, Anishinabe/Pomo, and Carl 'Bad Bear' Sampson, Western Shoshone, walked across America on the Longest Walks 2 and 3.
Michael Lane, who walked across America in the original walk in 1978, is among the group of walkers who left Washington DC on July 15. Lane is walking with his wife Sharon Heta, Maori from New Zealand. The couple and their daughters walked across America on Long Walk 2 in 2008.
The long walkers will be at a meet and greet in St Louis on Friday, Aug. 30, at 4 pm at Black Bear Bakery, 2639 Cherokee Street.
Lisa Zahner Reinhold, of the Oglala Commemoration, shared Peltier's message with the walkers in their St Louis area campground tonight.