Book Review: Call me Indian


Call me Indian (From the Trauma of Residential School to Becoming the NHL's First Treaty Indigenous Player)

is Fred Sasakamoose's autobiography. It is a life story that will awake every possible human feeling in you. You will feel anger, sadness, and desperation. You will also be proud for Fred, and happy for his successes despite everything he has been through. Fred is a Metis man from the Sandy Lake reserve. He comes from a loving family, with his parents, grandparents, and siblings. Unfortunately, at the age of 7, he and his brother were taken away from their family and sent to a residential school. Even though Fred doesn't spend lots of time describing his experience at the residential school in detail, we can definitely see the horror that he and the other children went through. Not to mention the pain and devastation his parents and grandparents went through while their young child was being taken away. As anywhere and anytime, there are always some good people, with good in their heart. One of the priests, rev. Roussel devoted his time to sports activities in the school and worked on children's sports development. Fred's first hockey experiences started with his grandfather, and luckily for him, with his talent and the work etic he got a chance to practice hockey in the school and shine. Hockey was a guiding light for Fred. On his path to the NHL, he worked hard, both physically and emotionally. He was faced with many insults, constant feelings of being different, and deep personal issues arising from trauma from the residential school. As much as he went on forward, he was being pulled back by the feeling of having a need to go home, longing for his parents, his culture, music, and ways of living. He was a great player, and eventually got to the NHL, but simply his heart was not there, his heart was at home. For many years he spent helping his community in many different ways. His life had many ups and downs, with many happy and sad moments, and both losses and victories. In his late 80s, he had many grand and great-grandchildren. He had a big and remarkable life and has left a legacy. This is a great and important read, that will stay with you for a long time.


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