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Sophie Stasso Haynes
November 7, 1931 ~ January 6, 2024 (age 92) 92 Years Old
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Arlee – Sophie Stasso Haynes, 92, started her journey home to Kolinsuten on Saturday, January 6th at her home near Dirty Corner.
An Elder of the Confederated Salish & Kootenai Tribe, she was born to Antoine and Elizabeth (Cullooyah) Stasso on Nov. 7, 1931 not to far from where she started her final journey. As a child she and her younger sister, Susie learned the traditional Bitterroot Selis ways from their family while picking berries, gathering bitterroot, camas, husk, and the traditional foods & medicines of the tribe. They spent many hours helping with the meat from hunts and helping in the woods when asked.
Her father worked passed while she was a young person and her mother suffered an untimely death, leaving her and her sister to be raised by her uncle Louie Cullooyah and family. This allowed her to continue to follow the traditional ways she had grown up learning as she went to the Urselines in the Winter, something that she had been taught by her elders to do as they remembered the prophesies of their medicine men and the need for the Salish to accept the Catholic ways.
Sophie was finished with school by the time she was 14 and she met her a young handsome man who helped run his families’ fruit and vegetable truck stand. David “Tapit “Haynes from the Spokane Res. and Sophie started their family and life together shortly thereafter. Sophie kept the home going and raised the children and their friends while David worked in Sugar Beets, The Orchards, and the Woods until he started do mechanic work. After Sophie was able to work outside the house she went to work as a homemaker for Lake Co.; then community health representative teacher for the Tribe. As one of the last full bloods, she Salish was her first language and she also knew & Kootenai before learning English for this reason she became a language teacher for Headstart and language camps, and was also an advisor for the to the elders on the Elders Committee.
Her husband passed in 2001 and she became more involved in the things she loved to do. She loved to take care of her grandchildren and teach them to enjoy powwows and stickgame like she did. She went picking and gathering with her daughters and granddaughters. She helped on the Culture Committee and even helped with the Salish Dictionary that was by Sally Thompson. She enjoyed watching her grandkids at basketball games and seeing them take state. She would love to sneak out a take drives to Missoula and the Valley even when she shouldn’t. Sophie took special interest in many of the kids in the area when they needed it and will be dearly missed by them. Even after she needed her Caregiver, Hiccups, for which we are forever grateful, she would still light up and be on cloud nine when her little ones (now grown up) would come by.
She leaves behind her family; children Elizabeth Pratt, Tom (Gloria), Fred (Shirley), Erma, Mona, & Sharon (Woody) all of Arlee and Phyllis (Ralph) of St. Ignatius; her cousin Francis Cullooyah of WA. And numerous grand, great grand and great greatgrandchildren, nieces, nephews and cousins from the Flathead, Spokane, Kalispel and Coeur d Alane reservations
She is being received back into her families arms by her husband, parents, uncles and sister as well as her child that passed when she was in infancy, her grandchildren, Sophie, Shaylene, David, Skyla, Dalena and greatgrandchild Yona
All services are to be held at the Arlee Community Center with Rosary on Monday, January 8, 2024 at 8 p.m. and Funeral Mass on Tuesday, January 9, 2024 at 11 a.m.