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GLITC's new Missing and Murdered Indigenous Relatives committee holds its first community event

A dozen racers gathered for a color run in Lac du Flambeau Friday to raise awareness for Missing and Murdered Indigenous Relatives. It was the first community event hosted by the Great Lakes Inter-Tribal Council’s newly established MMIR committee.

A dozen runners are engulfed in clouds of color at the starting line of a three-mile race in Lac du Flambeau. They’re running to raise awareness for missing and murdered indigenous relatives.

Each color has a distinct meaning.

“Suicide is orange, drug and substance abuse awareness is red, yellow is human trafficking and domestic violence is purple,” explains Shyanne Eustice, the chairwoman of the Great Lakes Inter-Tribal Council’s new MMIR Committee.

She says each of these factors, from addiction to domestic violence, contribute to the high number of indigenous people who are murdered or go missing each year. Many of those cases are never solved.

For tribal members like Amber Hoon, this issue is deeply personal.

“July 22 of this year, my own younger brother was murdered in Milwaukee, so this particular run holds a lot of personal meaning for me,” she says.

This is why Hoon says she will always show up to events like these and it’s why she encourages others to come too.

“There’s so many of us that have lost loved ones, friends,” she says. “Part of that healing is knowing, and there are so many of our families out here that don’t even know what happened to their loved one. So these events, and communities coming together to support these events, is very important for that healing.”

Erin Gottsacker worked at WXPR as a Morning Edition host and reporter from December 2020 to January 2023. During her time at the station, Erin reported on the issues that matter most in the Northwoods.
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