Char-Koosta News

The Official Publication of the Flathead Nation online

For the Record
June 2015

Zaneta Rae Kenmille Keplin
ELMO — On June 1, 2015, Zaneta Rae "Sissy" Kenmille Keplin joined her ancestors after a long courageous battle with cancer. She was born August 23, 1968 in Hawthorn, California, to Laurence and Marie Kenmille. She was baptized in the Catholic Church. Her godparents are Norman and Alberta Peratrovich. She was raised in Minneapolis, Minnesota, and later in Belcourt, North Dakota.

In 1988 she met Richard Keplin and they had a daughter, Kayla LaRae Keplin Ridgley. Richard and Zaneta were married December 31, 1999. Together they were foster parents to many children. They adopted their niece, Gabrielle Houle, as their daughter. Family was of utmost importance to Sissy.

Everything she planned always revolved around the children in her family. She spent countless hours with her daughters, nieces and nephews. Zaneta loved to sing and dance. She especially enjoyed telling stories of her adventures with Lenny and Tommy and her Papa John. Her house was always filled with laughter and joy.

Zaneta moved to Montana in 2003 to spend time with her grandmother and family. She planned numerous family get-togethers, surrounded by music, food, games, and laughter. Sissy tanned hides in the traditional way she learned from her grandmother. She also enjoyed playing stick-game and card games with her family and friends.

She received her bachelor's in Social Work from Salish Kootenai College in 2007. In 2008, she and Richard graduated with their masters in Social Work from Walla Walla through an accelerated program.

On August 23, 2008, her greatest birthday gift was received in the form of her granddaughter, JessaRae Ridgley. JessaRae kept her going for so many years. They had a special bond that JessaRae will carry in her heart for many years.

Zaneta was preceded in death by her grandmother, Agnes Oshanee Kenmille; her maternal grandparents, Barney and Anna Houle; her nephew, Laurence B. "LaLa" Kenmille; uncle, Donald Kenmille; son-in-law, Josh Ridgley; and her best friend, Lenny Joseph.

She is survived by her husband, Richard Keplin; her daughters, Kayla and Gabrielle; brothers, Allan and Amak; step- daughter, Richelle Keplin Poitra; stepson, K.K. Keplin; granddaughter, JessaRae; mother, Marie Houle Kenmille; sisters, Selina Kenmille and Mary Hewankorn; and father, Laurence Kenmille. She is also survived by numerous aunts, uncles, nieces, nephews, great-nieces, great-nephews, and grand-children.

Sissy's pallbearers are Stan Kenmille, Ray Nichols, Mayuk Caye, Daniel Stiffarm, Kelvon Kallowat, and Freeman Nelson. Honorary pallbearers are her husband, Richard Keplin, step- daughter, Richelle Keplin; her partners in crime, Danielle Tenas, Cissy Johnson, and Tom Johnson; her grandkids, nieces, nephews, and especially her Titi, JessaRae.

The wake for Sissy started Wednesday, June 3, at 11 a.m. at the Elmo Hall. Rosary took place Thursday, June 4, at 8 p.m. at the Elmo Hall, followed by a funeral mass on Friday at 10 a.m., June 5. Burial took place after the service at Dayton Cemetery.

Alois N. Burland Faulkner
RONAN — Alois N. "Curley" Burland Falkner, 91, passed away on June 12, 2015, at St. Luke Community Nursing Home in Ronan from lung cancer. She was born on December 2, 1923, to Gilbert Burland and Mary Antoinette Clairmont Peone. "Curley" was a member of the Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes. She worked as a bartender in many of the local establishments. She enjoyed visiting with her good friends, Lloyd and Sally Jackson. She also enjoyed playing bingo.

She was preceded in death by her parents; her husband, Homer Faulkner; son, Arthur R. Trahan (Gloria); and brother, Lloyd "Sonny" Burland.

Curley is survived by her children, Jim Skelton (Karen), of Cut Bank, Kaye Canvari, of Vancouver, Washington, Michael Dennis Trahan (Caro), of Ronan, and Ron Trahan (Vi), of St. Ignatius; numerous grandchildren and great-grandchildren; niece, Babe Burland; nephew, Gary Burland, of St. Ignatius; and step daughter, Judy.

Cremation is under the care of Shrider-Thompson Funeral and Cremation Services. Services were held Monday, July 29, and she will be laid to rest beside her husband, Homer, as per her request.

Agnes Mae Caye
POLSON — Our beloved Agnes Mae Caye has begun her journey back to the Creator on Sunday June 14, 2015. Agnes was the first born to Madeline Phillips Couture and Alexander Couture in a tee-pee just after midnight in Big Arm, Montana.

Agnes was a proud member of the Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes, where Agnes worked for over 30 years. Her last position was as THHS-CHS Program Manager. Agnes received her elementary education in Polson, Big Arm, Dixon and the Ursuline in St. Ignatius, Mt., and attended high school at Pierre South Dakota, Thompson Falls Montana and Chemawa in Oregon. Agnes’ Higher Education included many extended classes in the field of Human Services at the University of Montana in Missoula.

Agnes was married to Abraham Caye from 1945 to 1962. They moved to Washington and Idaho for a number of years. Returning to the Flathead Reservation around 1954, they made their home in Elmo where Agnes enjoyed raising their children.

Agnes loved visiting the elders in the community and communicating in her native tongue. She loved participating in cultural activities and religious ceremonies. She enjoyed interpreting for the elders, as well as taking them to Kalispell and Polson for shopping. Agnes loved the outdoors and outdoor activities. She absolutely loved to travel and it wasn’t shocking for Agnes to jump up and head to Worley to play bingo at the drop of a dobber. Agnes loved to gather berries and dig bitterroot during their seasons with her best friend and loving companion of many years, August Lefthand.

Agnes is survived by her companion and best friend August Lefthand; siblings Wayne (Barbara) Couture, Dog Lake, Eddie (Erlene) Couture, and Elmo Ignace Couture, Elmo; children Barbara Caye, Pablo, Delores (Grayson) Sam, Omak WA., Iris (Wayne) Creston B.C. and Abraham Caye Jr. Seattle, WA.

Agnes is preceded in death by her parents Alexander and Madeline Couture, her sons, Arnold Caye and Alvin Caye and daughter June Caye, sister Mary Lefthand and an infant sister.

Agnes Caye was a wonderful person, mom, sister, aunt, grandmother, great grandmother and friend. Agnes was always ready to help friends and family in need. John 3:16; For God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.

Funeral Mass for Agnes was held on Wednesday, June 17, 2015 at 10 A.M. at Elmo Hall. The Wake began at noon on Tuesday and the Rosary was held at Elmo Hall. Burial followed services at Dayton Cemetery. Memories and condolences may be sent to the family at

Arrangements are under the direction of The Lake Funeral Home and Crematory.

Patricia Hewankorn
DAYTON — Patricia Hewankorn, 75, passed away on Saturday, June 20, 2015, at her home in Dayton Creek. She was born on October 1, 1939, in Lonepine, Montana, to Alexander and Josephine (Caye) Lefthand. Like other traditional Kootenai homes, a large extended family lived together. This often included parents, grandparents, uncles, aunts, cousins and nieces and nephews. She will always be remembered as a lady who dedicated her life to working hard for her people from behind the scenes. Many benefited, and continue to benefit, from her influences to keep culture and traditions alive.

She started working at Headstart, then moved to Kootenai Culture Committee, later becoming the director. She received an honorary degree from Salish Kootenai College.

She enjoyed Sunday family dinners, and also having all family birthdays at the home. Her free time was spent with crossword puzzles, Jeopardy, Wheel of Fortune and The Price is Right with Roman. She also enjoyed bowling for many years.

She was preceded in death by her husband, Al; her parents; three children, Maxine, Rachel and Tuggy; brothers, Richard and Pat; and sisters, Marie and Edna.

She is survived by her children, Al, Jr., Ceara and Roman, of the family home on Dayton Creek; daughters, Geraldine, of Big Arm, Josephine, of Big Arm; and Dolly (Sylvesta), of Elmo; son, Michael, of Pablo; 17 grandchildren; numerous “greats” that she loved dearly; sister, Susie (Tom) Antiste, of Big Arm; brothers, Joey Squeque, of Big Arm, Kenny Lefthand, of Elmo, and Wain (Cheryl) Lefthand, of Elmo.

Traditional wake services began on Sunday, June 21, 2015, at 5 p.m. at Elmo Hall. A rosary was recited at 8 p.m. on Sunday, June 21, 2015, with burial at Dayton Indian Cemetery. Pallbearers are Joe Antiste, Adrian Hewankorn, Oskie Lefthand, Wes Lefthand, Dana Tenas and Frank Old Horn.

Memories and condolences may be sent to the family at Arrangements are under the direction of The Lake Funeral Home and Crematory.