DVIDS – News – Fort McCoy and Ho-Chunk Nation Renew Agreement in Special Ceremony


Fort McCoy and Ho-Chunk Nation officials met May 10 in Black River Falls, Wis., in a special ceremony to renew an agreement in a memorandum of understanding.

The ceremony took place at the Ho-Chunk Nation Tribal Office Building on the east side of Black River Falls and included Fort McCoy Garrison Commander Col. Michael Poss and Command Sgt. Maj. Raquel DiDomenico, Garrison Command Sergeant Major, and Ho-Chunk Nation Chief Clayton Winneshiek and Ho-Chunk Nation Chairman Marlon WhiteEagle.

The ceremony also included the participation of members of the Fort McCoy Environmental Division Public Works Branch, Natural Resources Branch, in particular Ryan Howell, Garrison Archaeologist, Cultural Resource Manager and Native American Coordinator. Howell was the main organizer of the event.

“This Memorandum of Understanding between the Ho-Chunk Nation and Fort McCoy represents Fort McCoy’s assumption of the U.S. military’s legal responsibility under multiple federal laws and executive orders to protect natural, historic, and sacred places. having traditional religious and cultural significance to all Native American peoples, but especially those of the Ho Chunk Nation, on whose territory the military installation of Fort McCoy now stands,” Howell said during the ceremony. he military recognizes that access to and protection of these special places is essential to maintaining the cultural integrity of Native American tribes, and that these places are essential to the cultural survival of Native communities.

“In order to preserve the character and physical integrity of these special places and their associated natural resources, and to facilitate Tribal members’ access to them, this agreement clarifies Fort McCoy’s commitment to conduct a active and persistent tribal consultation with the Ho-Chunk Nation, and specifically with tribal representatives from the Ho-Chunk Heritage Preservation Department and the Ho-Chunk Department of Natural Resources.

Howell also specifically stated that the agreement details how Fort McCoy will consult and notify the Ho-Chunk Nation prior to any ground disturbance, construction or training activity that may impact potential Ho-Chunk archaeological sites, traditional cultural properties (i.e. sacred sites) or other areas. of concern specified by management or representatives of Ho-Chunk.

WhiteEagle said he appreciated the opportunity to renew the deal.

“Thank you for your kind presence here today as we reaffirm this Memorandum of Understanding with Fort McCoy, the United States military, and with the federal government and the Ho-Chunk Nation,” WhiteEagle said. “I have served in this role here since 2019 as President of the Ho-Chunk Nation, and it is humbling for me to take part today in recognizing the respectful relationship we have with the government. federal and especially here today with the colonel reaffirming the relationship… and this respectful collaboration with the nation to preserve the… ancestral land.

Poss also added his appreciation for the special relationship between the Ho-Chunk Nation, Fort McCoy and the military.

“This agreement that we signed today has been in place for almost 23 years and has produced very positive results during that time,” Poss said. “The citizens of the Nation…use this agreement to exploit natural resources for traditional cultural activities. … We also reaffirm our desire to be good neighbors for the citizens of the Nation.

Fort McCoy’s motto is “Total Force Training Center”. Located in the heart of the Upper Midwest, Fort McCoy is the only US Army installation in Wisconsin.

The installation has provided support and facilities for the field and classroom training of more than 100,000 service members of all services nearly every year since 1984.

Learn more about Fort McCoy online at https://home.army.mil/mccoy, on the Defense Visual Information Distribution System at https://www.dvidshub.net/fmpao, on Facebook by searching “ftmccoy” and on Twitter by searching for “usagmccoy”. Also try downloading the Digital Garrison app on your smartphone and set “Fort McCoy” or another facility as your preferred base.

Date taken: 20.05.2022
Date posted: 20.05.2022 15:45
Story ID: 421209
Location: FORT MCCOY, Wisconsin, USA

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