NCSP support for the
Rising Nation River Journey 2002
The Safety and guidance support the NCSP provided to the 2002 Rising Nation River Journey is an example of our commitment to event support and paddling safety.
If you have a paddling event and would like to determine if the NCSP can help, contact:
George L. Fluck
Special Event Support Organizer
The following NCSP/LDC members provided support to the
Lena'pe Delaware River 2002 Journey from Hancock NY to Cape May NJ:
1. Mitzi Addabbo (Food)
2. John Brunner (Safety)
3. George Fluck (Website, Food, Transport Boats & Equipment, Shuttle, Safety)
4. Leona Fluck (Public Relations (TV & News media), Food, Shuttle, Safety)
5. Fred Gaghan (Safety)
6. Karen Heaphy (Food)
7. Kathleen Heaphy (Food)
8. Ken Heaphy (Food, Safety (Estuary/tidal section of the Delaware)
9. Bob LeDuc (Safety)
10. Beverley Lester (Food, Safety)
11. Bob Lester (Food, Safety)
12. Ursula Roy (Safety, Shuttle)
13. Dave Simon (Safety, Boats, Transport Boats & Equipment, Shuttle)
14. Jane Simon (Safety, Boats, Shuttle)
15. Barbara Shanko (Food, Safety)
16. Gean Sullivan (Food, Safety)
The Following are non members that supported the NCSP/LDC supporting the River Journey
1. Donna Hall (Food, Shuttle)
2. Violet Gaghan (Food)
3. Pattie Mihalik (Media/Press)
Sunday, August 11, 2002-- Rising Nation 2002 journey---
DWGNRA (Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area) information center (Kittatinny).
7 National Canoe Safety Patrol (NCSP) members (in picture with "red hats") provided safety and river guidance.
George and Leona Fluck guide their white water canoe on the Delaware as they prepare to
provide Safety to the 2002 Rising Nations River Journey.
By PATTIE MIHALIK
More than two centuries after the Lenape Indian tribe was driven from the local area the land will be given back to them, at least symbolically.
Centuries ago, the Lenape Indian tribe lived in small villages all over the Mahoning Valley, as well as in settlements along the Delaware River. Although they have mostly disappeared from the local scene, the Native American tribe is rising again.
A historic treaty will be signed on Aug. 24 at the former estate of William Penn recognizing the Lenape Indian Tribe as the original inhabitants of Eastern Pennsylvania and as the "indigenous stewards of their homelands."
The treaty will also declare the tribe to be the "spiritual keepers of the Lenape Sippyu, better known as the Delaware River."
The treaty's signing is meant to heal the past, give direction for today and preserve natural history, according to the document which will be signed by a bi-state partnership of more than 100 non-profit organizations, government agencies and people dedicated to promoting the stewardship of the Delaware River.
The last time an Indian treaty was signed in Pennsylvania was two centuries ago, according to tribal spokesperson Jim "Petokoah" Beer.
"The brotherhood that is being renewed is that which existed between the Lenape people and William Penn," he says. "This is something our tribal members talked about for years."
What will having that treaty mean to his people?
"This is a critical time for the tribe," said the spokesman. "Much of the existing culture is in peril. As the elders who speak the language pass away, a precious aspect of this living culture is in danger of being lost forever. Hopefully, what will come from this will help us preserve our heritage along with sacred stoneworks and burial grounds that have gone unrecognized."
To call attention to what they want to accomplish in preserving their culture as well as the beauty of the Delaware River, the Lenape tribe is staging a Rising Nation River Journey that will travel the entire length of the Delaware River.
Starting today along the Upper Delaware in New York, tribal members from across the country will join with many others in a symbolic Rising Nation Journey canoe caravan that will span two weeks. It will conclude with the signing of the treaty on Aug. 24 in Morrisville at the former estate of William Penn.
"From this new beginning, projects and programs will emerge," says Beer. Acquiring land to build a cultural center for educational, theatrical and cultural productions will be one of the goals.
But the Rising Nation Journey has significance for more than the Lenape people.
"It is important for all who care for Mother Earth and the preservation of the many historical sites, sacred sites and geographically significant places that are all over PA," says Beer. "These partnerships will help to strengthen the voice of our Lenape tribe here in the state and also the voice of all those who want to see the Delaware River Valley preserved in beauty."
One important partnership that is opening new opportunities to the Lenape people is what is known as the Greenway Partnership, a group of government agencies and non-profit groups interested in the environment.
"By working together, we will be able to preserve our historic sights that are in danger of being bulldozed," Beer says.
Noting that most school children today know little about the first inhabitants of the area, the tribal spokesman believes all that will change. "That's why we are calling it The Rising Nation Journey. We are rising in recognition, understanding and cooperation with the Greenway Partnership."
Those who sign the treaty will pledge to help the Lenape people create support for a cultural center, assist in helping them obtain and protect sacred land sites and encourage updated curriculum in public schools.
One of the many environmental groups supporting the Rising Nations project is the National Canoe Safety Patrol / Lower Delaware Chapter. George Fluck, Patrol Director, and his wife, Leona, Membership Chair, are two of the many volunteers who are helping with the river journey. The Flucks and their friends will provide two dinners for participants and will lead the safety patrol through the Phillipsburg to Bordentown part of the journey. Trained in river rescue and a good knowledge of the river, they will be there to provide assistance along much of the journey which is open to the general public.
"It's the least we can do," says George Fluck of his role in helping the tribe. "After all, they had their land taken away from them. It's time for all of us to step forward to give them the recognition they deserve."
Both he and his wife say they are great admirers of the native American philosophy of living in harmony with the earth.
"There is much they can teach us," says George. He believes the Rising Nation River trip and treaty signing will give the tribe more visibility which, in turn, will give people a better understanding of the area's first inhabitants.
Anyone interested in canoeing with the group or in learning more about the goals of the Lenape people can find more information at the National Canoe Safety Patrol web site at www.ncspldc.org A schedule of events, including evening ceremonies and entertainment, is posted there.