DAYTON — It is with heartfelt sadness that we announce the sudden passing of our beloved husband, father, grandfather, brother, and uncle Wilbert Lee Buckskin on August 26, 2020. His representation, knowledge, and caring for his family and community will be greatly missed. His latest involvement was with the Kootenai Culture Elder Advisory Committee and sitting in on Tribal council meetings. He was also proud to represent the Kootenai people as the War Dance chief for the Elmo Standing Arrow Powwow as it was passed down from his father Matt Michel. He also served in the Army (Vietnam) from 1967-1968.
Wilbert, his wife, and grandson loved to travel all over the Northwest and Canada to play stick games and making many new friends wherever he traveled and to especially watch his grandson play and win in tournaments. His greatest pride was raising his grandson and teaching him everything about his culture, respect, and right from wrong, driving him to school and picking him up afterwards and then taking him to McDonalds or Dairy Queen for a treat. Wilbert flew his wife to Hawaii and also toured the whole country of Vietnam from the Meng Kong Delta to Hanoi.
Wilbert’s most recent leadership role was to protest against the Rock Creek mining in the Cabinet Mountains, “The lands of the Ktunaxa Nation” which a favorable ruling has come out on his behalf.
Those who have gone before his are his parents Mathias “Matt” Michel and Lucy Moody Michel, brothers Mathias “Junior” Michel, Keith, Levi, and sister Linda “Ducky” Michel, brother-in-law Ronald Glenmore Seminole, daughter Rene Hunter Strahan. His nephews Mathias “Robbie” Michel, Leo Hammer, Jacob Michel, niece Echo Michel, cousins Danny Tenas, Danelle Tenas, Terry Lozeau, Levi Lozeau Big Beaver, Caroline, Dorothy Couture, and many aunts and uncles.
He is survived by his brothers Gilbert (Eudora), Victor (Linnea), Leonard (Melissa) Michel, sisters Diane Michel, Geneva Glenmore, his wife Beverly Michel and their children; sons Wilbert “Bubba” Michel, Waylon Buckskin Michel, William Buckskin (Christine) Michel, daughters Janelle (Kevin) Askan, Leighann Michel; Damon McKinney and his children Jade and Brendan, Ryan Lefthand and his children LiElla and Lukey, nieces and nephews John Glenmore, Ronnette Glenmore, Jeremiah, Lucinda, and Uriah Michel, Barbara, Joshua, Jazra, Jade Michel, Lucas, Nolan, Miles, Raeshawn Michel, Alexander Nephi-Michel, Sharon Michel, Keith Michel Jr., Llewellyn and Whisper Michel, Jimmy Michel, grandsons Garette Michel, Marquise, Asa, Micah, and Jimmy Askan, Ryder and Ryan Michel, Zeke, Zack and Derek Strahan, granddaughters Amerie and Swinn Askan, Rue Michel, Aaliyciah Irvine, and a new addition granddaughter, Lillian Dawn Rose Michel born August 27, 2020, and numerous great nieces and nephews to mention.
Wilbert worked many jobs throughout his life and decided to retire and enjoy life, his family, children, and grandchildren.
Funeral was held Monday, August 31, 2020, at Elmo Hall. Burial was at Dayton Cemetery.