When Jeff awoke, he went to his arrowheads and trimmed off any surplus pitch; he did the same for the tomahawk. Then he walked with his crutch over to select the branch for his bow. He picked one about one inch in diameter, ...
Author: Mike Wyant
Publisher: Xlibris Corporation
An eleven-year-old Navajo boy is taken by force from his Arizona reservation home and bussed to Fort Sill Indian School near Lawton and Fort Sill, Oklahoma, in 1949. The U.S. law requires the Navajo children to attend school in a federally operated boarding school. The boy is treated roughly at his capture and on the bus trip. He vows to escape from the school and walk/run back the eight hundred miles back to his home, realizing he has no money and does not trust the white man. He is forced to rely on his survival skills. He makes several friends at the school. However, in the spring, he leaves at night and starts his journey home. The challenges he faces at the school and also his journey and how he overcomes those challenges are detailed. When he finally reaches his home area, he hears crying from several people and creeps through the sagebrush to see what is happening. The same government agents who seized him are trying to wrestle an eight-year-old girl from her mother and grandmother and put her on the bus. But while that happens, the boy slips unnoticed on to the bus and invites all the children to follow him, and he will hide and protect them until the agents have gone and stopped looking for them. Twenty-one of the children come with him, and he hikes for two days, covering his trails, until he reaches an old unknown cliff dwelling that he and his family had stayed at many times. It is well hidden. For close to a year, the children survive in the cliff dwelling, learning Indian skills from the boy and school skills from a twelve-year-old girl. Meanwhile, a large political battle takes place for many months, and finally, the law is changed so the Navajo children can stay on the reservation to learn the white man's ways and education. When all the papers have been signed by the Congress and the president, the children's group is able to return home. A large dinner is planned by the tribal council for their return. At this dinner, the boy, Jeff White Cloud, has his name formally changed by the tribal leaders to Nasha Bi³ Hoga, He Who Walks Alone.