by Robert Goetz
Joint Base San Antonio-Randolph Public Affairs
11/1/2012 - JOINT BASE SAN ANTONIO-RANDOLPH, Texas -- The
first Native American to walk in space will visit Joint Base San
Antonio-Randolph in November, a highlight of the annual Native American
Retired Navy Cmdr. John Herrington, a former NASA astronaut who served
aboard the space shuttle Endeavour a decade ago, will speak during the
Native American Heritage Month Luncheon Nov. 29 at the Kendrick Club,
the culmination of a month-long schedule of events.
Edward Blauvelt, Randolph Native American Heritage Month Committee
chairman, said Herrington, an enrolled member of the Chickasaw Nation,
exemplifies the observance's theme this year: "Serving Our People,
Serving Our Nation: Native Visions for Future Generations."
"We're looking at the different ways Native Americans have served,
whether it's in their tribes, in the military and as doctors, teachers,
lawyers - in all walks of life," he said. "One of our aims is to educate
children about the accomplishments of Native Americans in the United
States, so we're including the Randolph schools, the child development
center and the youth center in our programs."
NAHM will include a poster contest at Randolph Elementary School that
will focus on the ways Native Americans show their service, a middle
school art contest and display and an essay contest for high school
seniors that will feature a $1,000 scholarship.
Blauvelt, who is part Mohawk and Creek Indian, said middle school
students' art efforts will be shown Nov. 17-26 at the Randolph Exchange
and entered into a Bexar County 4-H Club competition. The essay contest
for high school seniors whose parents or legal guardians work at
Randolph will focus on the NAHM theme.
Throughout the month, Native American storytelling sessions and music
and dance performances are planned at the Randolph library, CDC and
youth center. Native American crafts will be exhibited Nov. 27 and 29 at
the youth center.
Blauvelt said Grammy Award-winning musician Virgie Ravenhawk, a retired
Army master sergeant, is scheduled to play her Native American flute
music Nov. 15 at the youth center, while Bryan Jacobs and his family
will perform native dancing Nov. 16 and 17, also at the youth center.
Other events include a powwow Nov. 17 at JBSA-Fort Sam Houston and a
turkey shoot that same day at the youth center. Participants at the
turkey shoot will receive archery safety and target shooting instruction
and compete for food prizes.
Blauvelt said the month's service theme aptly reflects Native American culture.
"Service is a requirement; everybody in a tribe has something to offer
to the tribe," he said. "You have to be able to serve your fellow man."
Throughout American history, Native Americans have displayed their
willingness to serve in the military, compiling the highest per-capita
service record of all ethnic groups in America, Blauvelt said.
"Our goal is to educate people about who we are," he said. "We're part
of this country; we're helping to shape the direction we're going."