TULSA, Okla. – The Muscogee (Creek) Nation has announced the first four inductees into its MVSKOKE Hall of Fame, and they will be honored at an Oct. 11 gala at the River Spirit Event Center.
The MVSKOKE Hall of Fame takes the place of the tribe’s Living Legends ceremony that was held each June at the Muscogee (Creek) Nation Festival. Living Legends honored in previous years include former MCN Principal Chiefs R. Perry Beaver and Bill Fife, and Bataan Death March survivor Phillip Coon. Muscogee (Creek) Nation Living Legends honorees will be grandfathered into the MVSKOKE Hall of Fame.
Tiger said the MVSKOKE Hall of Fame received a number of excellent nominations, however, four were selected as 2012 inductees.
Muscogee (Creek) Nation citizens Simon Harry, Elsie Martin, Joy Harjo and the late Allie Reynolds are the 2012 recipients of the award.
Harry, a Euchee Tribal elder, is regarded as one of the most respected people within the Muscogee (Creek) Nation, and he’s been one of the driving forces of keeping the Euchee tradition, language and culture alive. He’s the leader of the Duck Creek ceremonial ground.
Martin committed more than 20 years of her life as the primary caretaker for Ray Murphy Jr., who was injured in a wrestling accident at Oklahoma State in 1969, which left him a quadriplegic. Martin’s deep faith and commitment to Murphy’s well-being especially in the early years of his accident, gave him comfort. Together their lives intertwined and have been an inspiration to countless people.
Harjo is a prominent poet, musician and author, and has had 15 works of poetry published. Her accomplishments cover many genres in the art field, and she’s a major proponent for Indian issues and Muscogee (Creek) issues, and always stresses her heritage as a proud Muscogee (Creek) citizen. Harjo has produced five well-received albums, written two children’s books, a memoir and co-wrote a screenplay.
Reynolds, who passed in 1994 at the age of 77, was a Muscogee (Creek) citizen who never forgot where he came from despite finding success as a major league baseball player. There are many throughout the United States who believe Reynolds should be in the National Baseball Hall of Fame. His achievements are well-recorded from the time he played with the Cleveland Indians until the time he pitched in the World Series and post-season series with the New York Yankees.
The mistress of ceremonies for the Oct. 11 gala will be Salina Jayne-Dornan, Mayor, City of Eufaula and Muscogee (Creek) citizen.
The MVSKOKE Hall of Fame induction requires that the individual must have brought recognition to the Muscogee (Creek) Nation or have made outstanding contributions to the quality of life and development.
“I felt like a MVSKOKE Hall of Fame was long overdue, especially to recognize people that have contributed to the success of this Nation, whether it was on the community or national level,” Tiger said. “It’s a celebration of the Nation to be able to display the type of people who are contributing to the Nation. I’m excited that it’s come to fruition.”
MCN Director of Tourism & Recreation William Lowe said the final details of the event are coming together.
“Plans for the MVSKOKE Hall of Fame Induction Gala are coming along great. We are planning a fabulous evening that includes cocktails, dinner and a silent auction,” Lowe said. “All proceeds will benefit the Creek Nation Foundation, Inc. and the Muscogee (Creek) Nation Festival.”