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Fort Robinson Outbreak Spiritual Run Article

January 06, 2015

100+ Youth run 400 miles in 5 days

Yellow Birds' Fort Robinson Outbreak Spiritual Run was founded by Phillip Whiteman Jr. originally, to pay homage to those Northern Cheyenne ancestors that broke out of Fort Robinson on January 9, 1879. Most of them were killed at this time, but a few survived and made it to their homeland, the Powder River country in Southeastern Montana. Because of the sacrifice of Chief Dull Knifes band, and the determination of Chief Little Wolfs people, they now have the Northern Cheyenne Reservation. Today the 19th Annual Fort Robinson Run has grown to be much more: It is about healing, wellness, and empowerment.

The runners include over 100 Northern Cheyenne youth from the reservation who range in age from 10 to young adults. We bring youth from all backgrounds together. Many of the participants are considered "at risk" youth and come from disadvantaged backgrounds, and some come from strong families, they come together to mentor one another. The runners make a commitment to undertake a five day journey across 400 miles that commemorates their ancestry by replicating their epic journey from Nebraska to their homeland in Montana. They run day and night enduring January temperatures and physical hardships, much like their ancestors of 136 years ago. They learn valuable lessons of unity, responsibility to self and others, and how to overcome adversities. They encourage one another through winter weather, running through the sand-hills of Nebraska, the sacred Black Hills of South Dakota, and the plains and mountains of Montana. They gain a strong connection to the sacrifice of their ancestors, and a greater appreciation for life. The run instills in them a sense of pride, higher self-esteem, a deeper respect for their identity and sincere respect for their homeland, and connection to mother earth.

The runners will be at Crazy Horse Memorial on January 11th, sometime in the early afternoon. They will have a chance to rest and recharge with a warm meal provided by Crazy Horse Memorial Foundation.

For more information on how you can contribute to the Fort Robinson Outbreak Spiritual Run go to: