They call it sacred…
They call it medicine…
“We are river people. We are water people” says Glenda Breiler.
Today it’s leading their way.
“I’m excited to connect to the water in this way,” says Selena Kearney.
They’ll connect from canoes, kayaks…one person vessels and some that hold a dozen.
Their sights set on Cannonball to join the protest against the Dakota Access pipeline.
“When we stand in unity that’s where we have the most strength,” says Breiler.
Many of them brought water from their homes to mix with the water of the Missouri River.
They come from many states including Alaska, Washington, Idaho, and Colorado.
“I don’t think our mother earth really had a voice until today… but today people understand the importance of at least trying to speak for the earth,” says Brian Cladoosby, President National Congress of American Indians.
“Seeing all of you here, it makes my heart happy,” says a man who was sending off the canoers.
“It’s about survival and not just physically in our blood, but culturally and spiritually,” says a woman watching them take off.
As they headed out this morning the rain started to fall.
Water from the sky, mixing with the water carrying them to their relatives waiting for them downstream.
The canoers are traveling to Fort Rice today.
They will do the second half of their trip tomorrow.