DARYL FRAZIER - ZHOONIYAA ININI (OUR MONEY MAN)
The Honor the Earth family is very sad at this time. This weekend, Daryl Frazier, our Chief Financial Officer, passed away unexpectedly. We have all suffered a loss of a very good man, and we extend our condolences to his loved ones.
For us, Daryl Frazier was not only our zhooniyaa inini (our money man) but a member of our family. He was kind, very patient, very passionate, very smart, and very funny. And we loved him. He was family.
There are many people that Daryl touched in our community, far beyond the staff of the organizations the White Earth Land Recovery Project and Honor the Earth.
Daryl loved to be in the office, but he also loved to be in the field.
He would come to fish ins and demonstrations for our people and the rights of the Anishinaabeg, and this was a very big support for our community, as he picked up a sign and stood with our people before they got arrested in Lake Bemidji.
I believe that his favorite days were those when he could go out and buy wild rice with the men. He was very excited about this. One day, he prepared for this, and called me to say that he was driving up to Rice Lake to buy wild rice from harvesters, with $l0,000 in a bag. I inquired what he was going to do with the wild rice, and asked him if he knew where he was going… as it seemed a bit unwise to send him off into the woods, with no plan. He waited for the guys to get ready and then happily went along to purchase our most sacred food from the traditional harvesters He was very proud that day.
Daryl’s love of music, particularly punk rock was well noted in our organization, and he very much appreciated the musicians and artists on the board of Honor the Earth. I was always proud to introduce him to new musicians and he was proud to work with us.
Daryl was always very gracious, and provided excellent counsel, not only financial, but in matters of character of people. He tried very hard to work with everyone, and if some one was aggressive or disparaging to him, we all took offense at this.
He was kind to all of the small children and to many who would not be given much support in other organizations.
Daryl weathered many storms with our organization, whether we were poor or rich, he stood with us, asking only to do the books and accounting for the organization and to be present when great things happened. To work in this organization , this community is a commitment to a lifeway. Daryl made that commitment. There were times when in the financial crash, neither Daryl or I took any money , and just tightened our belts to work through the storm. Daryl was that loyal. That is a rare human being .
When our community suffered, Daryl would suffer with us, but he, like many of us, had faith that one day things would get better.
Daryl was a fantastic dresser. He would sport an excellent Hawaiian shirt, or else was able to muster some extraordinary alligator cowboy boots or fancy shoes, which amazed us. We loved his style.
We will miss Daryl and are grateful for the many years he worked with us. We hope he has peace in the next world and continues to play guitar with the Gizmos. Rest in Power, Daryl. We miss you already.
- Winona LaDuke