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Indian activist Camp dies at 72

OKLAHOMA CITY--Carter Camp, a onetime activist with the American Indian Movement who was a leader in the Wounded Knee occupation in South Dakota, has died in Oklahoma. He was 72.

Camp's sister, Casey Camp-Horinek, said Thursday he died Dec. 27 surrounded by family in White Eagle, Oklahoma. Camp-Horinek said her brother had been suffering from cancer for the past year. Services for Camp were held Tuesday.

Camp, a member of the Ponca Tribe of Oklahoma, was a member of the American Indian Movement, organizing more than 30 chapters in his home state of Oklahoma, Camp-Horinek said. The American Indian Movement was founded in the late 1960s to protest the U.S. government's treatment of Native Americans and demand that the government honor its treaties with Indian tribes.

He had a leading role in the Trail of Broken Treaties in 1972, in which a caravan of Native American activists drove across the country. The following year, Carter headed to South Dakota with other AIM leaders. There they organized the Wounded Knee uprising, a 71-day siege that included several gunbattles with federal officers. “He was the only person in (a) leadership position in Wounded Knee who never left Wounded Knee, not to go out and do press junkets, not to go and sit in a hotel for a while. None of that. He was a war leader there. He stayed inside with his warriors,” Camp-Horinek said of her brother.

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In this March 8, 1973 file photo, the Rev. Ralph Abernathy, right, president of the Southern Leadership Conference, visits with American Indian Movement leader Carter Camp after Abernathy met with Native Americans who were in their second week of occupation of Wounded Knee, South Dakota.

(AP)

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