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  • Writer's pictureAntonio Gonzales

Inter-Tribal Community Memorial Service for Tomas Reyes

Greetings Relatives,

An inter-tribal and community memorial service to honor the life of Thomas Reyes, will beheld at Intertribal Friendship House (IFH), 523 International Boulevard, in Oakland. Thomas passed on to spirit world with a pure heart on Wednesday, February 11th, after months with cancer and other complications. His cremation, and spirit were released in a small ceremony, on Tuesday 17th in Oakland. Indeed, we are in deep respect and hold in high reverence to California Indian Nations who embraced and guided Thomas through his final hours with us.

Everyone is cordially invited to come to IFH on Saturday, February 28th. The memorial service will be held from 12 to 4 pm. The All Nations Singers, and drummers are welcome to join us; as well as Traditional Danzantes who are interested, please coordinate with Alvaro Tellez at 415-286-2448. Please bring food for a feast, with desserts and fruits (apple n cherry pies!), some flowers, and to make for an Alter (come early…) all to share and potlatch. (no sodas, diet, etc. please!). And, please bring pictures you may have of Thomas to pin-up then share with his family for the times he was missed!

This is the time to celebrate the quiet strength of Thomas, our brother in the struggle. Come and share experiences about him, and talk story! All friends, flags, organizations, and campaigns where Tomas participated are welcomed to attend. A meal will start at approximately at 12:15 pm with a blessing of the food. Tomas (notice I dropped the h!) was born in Fresno, California on October 9, 1944. He is of Tarahumara (Mexico) descent (a runner). He often said to some his animal symbol relation is a Coyote/Dog. As a Chicano from the San Joaquin Valley, Tomas continued to evolve in his spiritual journey leading him into the Bay Area, and the realization of his Indigenous roots. Tomas is a veteran of Vietnam; a graduated from the University of California at Fresno State with a Masters Degree; a long time UFW supporter; in solidarity with DQ University; a Sun-Dancer; AIM warrior; A Long Walker (across USA-08); he formerly worked with the UN Non-Governmental Organization (NGO) International Indian Treaty Council, and was a social justice community organizer for human rights. Tomas was always there to give a hand and his word. He will be missed but not forgotten! Others will rise and follow in his path.

At 1:15 pm an open microphone will be provided for those in attendance who wish to speak. Also, Special representatives, and Wounded Knee 73’ veterans “Point Man” Lenny Foster (Dine/Navajo), spiritual advisor to Leonard Peltier, and Ms. Jesse Riddle (Pit Ri ver/Apache), will be in the house. This portion of the memorial begins with AIM spiritual advisor Fred Short, and the AIM staff carrier.* At approximately 2 pm Ms. RosaLinda Palacio, partner to Tomas and handling his affairs, has requested time to speak and to share special gifts to friends of Tomas. At 2:30 there will also be a blanket offering/request to raise funds to defray some costs incurred for Tomas’ cremation and medical costs. Finally, Companero Guillermo Vasquez, fellow Sun-Dancer, wishes to acknowledge people who will be coming to the ceremony….

Our heart-felt condolence to the family for the loss of our friend and brother Tomas. And to his son Tom Anthony, and daughter Endelisa, we extend our hand in friendship and deep appreciation for their father's sacrifice for the peoples, and Mother Earth to live on.

See AIM-WEST website/Facebook for more details.

All My Relations,

Antonio Gonzales

AIM-WEST Director


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