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It is with deep sorrow and much love that we mourn the passing of “Ohpokohtssi hksis aakíí” Lillian Faye Crow-Chief on July 17, 2023. Lillian was a brave, caring and unimaginably generous mother, grandmother, sister, and friend.
Lillian was born on August 23, 1960 and attended both on and off-reserve schools and graduated from Western Canada High School in Calgary, AB. She attended Mount Royal College (Justice) and later the University of Lethbridge (Business Management) where she served as President of the Native American Student Organization.
While in High School, Lillian competed and became the very First Siksika Princess in 1979 and represented Siksika at Powwows across Canada and USA. Lillian also became a member of the world famous Up With People Group (Cast B, 1981) that performed and toured across USA and Central America. Lillian was a horse lover and rode in the 125th Anniversary Blackfoot Confederacy Horseback Ride from the border to the Blackfoot Crossing with students in program she was facilitating. Lillian was a member of the Prairie Chicken Society since her youth and attended all their meetings and annual ceremonies. She shared her knowledge and brought others into the traditional sundance circle over the years. She also undertook a special needs program where she introduced the powwow to her students and ensured powwow regalia was made for all of them.
Lillian worked as a Camp Coordinator in her youth, was a Small Business Owner, a Life Skills Coach, a Mediator for Siksika Justice, and most recently, took on the responsibility of raising 3 of her grandchildren full-time. Lillian was a true entrepreneur whether through her traditional arts & crafts, yard sales, or concessions, she was always looking for new business ventures.
Lillian was best known as an environmentalist/advocate fighting for Siksika water rights, land rights, women’s equality, workplace bullying, governmental corruption and was a champion for the underdog. She feed the homeless, took in many youth into her home and clothed and fed the hungry. She fought against racism, domestic violence and wanted addiction services improved.
Family & friends share fond memories of her contagious laugh and humor and having a great time with her. She loved Bob Seger, the Eagles, 60 & 70 music, dancing the night away, visiting, and marathon movie watching.
Lillian’s pride and joy were her beloved sons, Adam (37), Shane (34), and Kyle (33) Hoof, and daughter Cecilia Sunwalk (35) and precious grandchildren Laney, Shade, Kiaayo, Kihaykii, Piita, Melody, Frankie, Odin, Shadow, and Ryker.
Lillian was pre-deceased by her parents Hugh & Valerie Crow Chief, and Brother Hugh Crow Chief.
Lillian is Survived by her Siblings Romeo, Ann-Marie (Rob), Daphne (Dexter), Bob (Barbra), Duane, Wilda (Calvert), Marcia (Rik), Glen, Jason (Carrie), and Ben. Her traditional siblings - Katie Red Old Man, Denise Eyman, James Wells, Leanne Sleigh, Michelle Crow Chief, Oliva Good Rider, Kevin Brass, Debbie Smith, Louise Doore, Darryl & Mona McDonald and numerous nephews and nieces she cared for deeply. She is also survived by her Great Aunt Rena Sinclair, Aunt Isabel Olivier, Aunt Eileen Black, and Aunt Christine Little Chief.
Lillian’s Extended Clan Families are the Backfat, Black, Many Guns, White Elk, Crow Chief, Sitting Eagle, Ayoungman, Weasel Head, Many Fires, Good Eagle, Young, Waterchief, Little Light, Red Guns, Poor Eagles, Black Kettles, Sleigh, Pretty Young man, Tail Feathers, Beebe, Little Chiefs, Royal, Hairy Bull, Wolf Leg, Starlight, Bear Shirt, Healy, Fox Calf Robe, Calf, Bear Robe and Olivier
The family would like to thank the South Health Intensive Care Unit for their care and all those that reached out during our time of need.
Wake will be held at the residence of Lillian Crowchief on Friday, July 21, 2023 (4PM) and Funeral Service on Saturday, July 22, 2023 at the Siksika Arbor at 11:00 AM. Family invite you back to the residence of Lillian Crowchief for a feast following burial.