November 01, 2009

Aboriginal youths to carry Olympic flame

Akwesasne Mohawk retrieve Olympic Flame from GreeceAronhiaies Herne, a 23-year-old teacher and cultural program coordinator from the Mohawk community of Akwesasne, has been selected as one of 11 aboriginal youths that will have the job of a lifetime over the next few months–running with the Olympic Flame as its guide and protector to ensure it keeps burning bright on its cross-Canada journey.

He will be joined by two Akwesasne Mohawks who were also chosen to have an active part in the 2010 Olympic Torch Relay–Mike Benedict Jr. (community torchbearer) and Howard “Iothore” Thompson (honorary elder fire keeper).

Herne’s journey as a flame attendant began Oct. 27 when he traveled to Greece, the birthplace of the modern-day Olympic Games, to safeguard the flame as it made its way to Canada. He is one of two aboriginal youths chosen to retrieve the Olympic Flame based on his performance at a test event. He was selected to watch over and maintain the flame before and during the longest domestic relay in Olympic history.
Comment:  For more on the subject, see Protests Planned Against Torch Relay and Native Leaders, Youth Target Olympics.

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