Tucson: Tohono O’odham walks 2,500 miles for type 2 diabetes awarenessby Karyn Zoldan on Mar. 12, 2010, under A Tisket, A Tasket, Health
After almost two years on the road and over 2,500 miles, Tohono O’odham walkers Terrol Dew Johnson, Maray and Shane Johnson are almost home, arriving in Tucson on Friday, March 12 and heading for the final leg of their journey back to the Tohono O’odham Nation just 60 miles away in Sells, Arizona.
It’s been a long and fascinating journey, beginning with a special blessing on the Coast of Maine in May of 2008. Their route has taken the walkers through many Native and non-Native communities across the country to spread awareness about the major health issues facing Native American people. The goal has been to not only share, but to learn how other communities are addressing these challenges.
The Walk has been a personal journey and mission for organizer, weaver and Tohono O’odham Community Action (TOCA) Co-Director Terrol Dew Johnson. “This is a physical journey, an emotional journey and a spiritual journey for me,” he said. “I want the young people walking with me to see the country, to experience it on a deep level, and to have time to learn healthy ways of dealing with the pressures of being a Native youth. This journey is about hope – hope for myself, my family, my community and Native peoples across the continent.”
A celebration of this remarkable journey will be held in Sells, Arizona on Saturday, March 20, featuring community participation in the final 6-mile walk into Sells, along with blessings, traditional singing and dancing and a feast of traditional O’odham foods. The public is invited.