GOSHEN, CT - As a Texas grand jury prepares to hear evidence in the cases of a slain white buffalo and his mother, Native Americans prepare for the naming ceremony of a white buffalo calf at a ranch in Connecticut.
The Associated Press reports as many as 2,000 people could attend to watch as elders of the Lakota Tribe name the rare, white, non-albino, male buffalo, which is said to be a one in 10 million occurrence.
A similar ceremony in June 2011 at the Lakota Ranch west of Greenville, Texas attracted over 1,000 visitors to honor Lightning Medicine Cloud. The calf was born to the heard of Arby Little Soldier, who named him Lightning because he was born during a thunderstorm.
On April 30, 2012, just 12 days before Lightning’s first birthday, the white buffalo was killed. His mother, Buffalo Woman, was found dead the following day.
Nearly two months later, investigators have gathered data that could bring charges against those responsible. Authorities have also issued subpoenas for individuals to appear before the panel. The Hunt County Grand Jury meets Friday, July 27.
In Goshen, Connecticut, farmer Peter Fay says he’s concentrating on keeping the animal safe. He told The Hammill Post:
“I haven’t gone to work since he was born. I’m getting so many calls and people stopping by and people are very, very concerned about what’s going to happen to him.”
The Lakota Ranch near Greenville is expected to again house a white buffalo, once the case involving the buffalo deaths is completed.
Cynthia Hart-Button is the president and founder of Sacred World Peace Church in Oregon and has a record 14 white bison. Hart-Button has offered to provide the ranch Chief Hiawatha, in hopes that the buffalo will serve as protection for the ranch and also help produce another white calf.
Below, Arby Little Soldier explains the significance of the white buffalo and why the animal is valued as a prophet.