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Sault Tribe’s services, facilities and postponed events during COVID-19 pandemic

Untitled 1Due to the continuing presence of COVID-19 cases across the tribe’s seven-county service area, Sault Tribe continues to ask staff and the public to practice social distancing and wash their hands often. Masks are required in tribal health clinics. Plans will be updated as needed. Miigwech.

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Are you or someone you know interested in becoming a foster parent?

Anishnaabek Community and Family Services (ACFS) is in need of tribal foster homes. Make the difference in the life of a child, consider being a foster parent. Contact ACFS at 906‑632‑5250, or by email at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., for more information.

The impact of a foster parent lasts a lifetime!

Tony NertoliA life well lived…Anthony “Tony” Lewis Nertoli, 1946 – 2021

A great man who had a big, generous heart for his family and community, Anthony “Tony” Louis Nertoli, has crossed over to the spirit world to join his parents, Lucille (Hatch) Nertoli and Germano (Joe) Nertoli, his sister Barb (Edward “Pie”) Pine, and brother Phillip (Penny) Nertoli.

Of all the things he accomplished in life, Tony’s greatest love was family. A member of the Bear Clan, Tony was known as M’kwa Ogimaa ba (Bear Chief), also Dad, Uncle, Papa-Misho, Nert, Papa Nert and Big Brother. Tony is survived by his son, Thomas (Michaela) Dangler and grandson, William; and sisters, Jolene Nertoli and Catherine (Nertoli) DeVoy. Tony counts 68 nieces and nephews, including Michael (Becky) Pine and sons Christopher, David, Douglas; Debra Ann (Christopher Hall) Pine and children Alexia, Jada, Justin, Nick; Steven (Carrie) Pine and children Hunter, Samantha and Chance; Mariea (Dan) Pine-Mongene and children Joe, Jolene, Melinda; Priscilla Pine and daughter Aubrie; Becky Nertoli and children Jen, Nathan, Jordan and Brandon; Phillip Nertoli Jr.; Angela (Todd) Nertoli-Filback and children Donald, Jessica, Jocelyn, Kaitlynn; Luci (Holly) DeVoy; Rita DeVoy and daughter Luna; Tony (Amy) Nertoli; and many more great, great, great nieces and nephews.

Tony’s life was blessed by two additional families that he also deeply loved…his tribe and baseball. A decades long career began in Tony’s last year of college working for TV 9/10 as a camera man. He often told the story of being the only reporter allowed behind the barricade lines during the Bay Mills Indian Community’s protest over treaty fishing rights. Tony began work for his second family, the Sault Ste. Marie Tribe of Chippewa Indians. Tony served his tribe in many ways—as an elected tribal board member, a community developer, as well as one of the tribe’s first appellate judges, before settling in as the director of the USDA Commodity Food Program. During his tenure, Tony and his staff provided food to thousands of tribal citizens in Michigan’s Upper and Lower Peninsulas. In this role, Tony assumed additional service at the national level as president of the Native American Food Distribution Program on Indian Reservations (NAFDPIR). Because of his efforts, the Sault Tribe became a national leader in addressing food insecurity in Indian Country. Serving four consecutive, two-year terms, Tony was most proud of the achievement of developing Food Distribution Centers nationwide that provided needy families with respect and dignity as they shopped for what they needed, including fresh foods.

Tony’s third family was the Sault Baseball Team. Tony’s love for the game came from his parents. He said, “I owe everything I’ve achieved to them. My dad loved baseball.” Generations of players have passed through the Sault program while Tony coached. Lovingly called “Papa-Nert” by his players, Tony said, “You are a coach to them for a few years and then you’re a part of their lives. That’s what makes it so worthwhile—the relationship that you create.” Tony’s baseball career included induction into the Michigan High School Baseball Coaches Association Hall of Fame (2000) and the Gordon Malcolm Sportsman of the Year award (1997). After a brief retirement, Tony came back as assistant coach to the Sault High JV team.

Tony coached and mentored many of his players to go on to bigger and better life achievements. When needed, he took care of them like his own kids, earning the nickname, Papa-Nert.

Tony told his players that there are three things that would be fine for a coach to be remembered for: “Win more than lose, play with pride, know that someone cared.” Tony will always be remembered for his inspiration to achieve, his pride in who he was and where he came from, and especially for the great love he so generously shared with his personal family, his tribal family and the hundreds of players and parents who were his baseball family.

Tony will lay at the Niigaanagiizhik Ceremonial Building from his entrance ceremony Monday, Nov. 29, afternoon until the final ceremony at 11:30 a.m. on Wednesday, Dec. 1, 2021. Burial will be held at Donaldson Catholic Cemetery.

Arrangements are in the care of C.S. Mulder Funeral Home and Cremation Services. Condolences may be left online at www.csmulder.com

The USDA Program will be closed on Wednesday, Dec. 1, so staff can attend services for USDA Director Tony Nertoli, who passed away Nov. 25.

“Rock Your Mocs” workshop facilitated by Jackie Minton.

Dec. 11 and 12, 2021, 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. at the Niigaanagiizhik Ceremonial Building.
Limited to 10 spots!

Please call Grey Shea in the Language & Culture Division at 906‑635‑6050 to sign up!
Two-day instruction in making moccasins.

MUST be able to commit to both days.
MUST be able to hand sew.
Adults only.

 Rock Your Mocs Workshop

Tony NertoliFamily, friends, and community: Services have been set for Uncle Tony, Coach Anthony “Tony” Nertoli a.k.a. Papa Misho, Papa Nerts.

Monday: Welcoming ceremony at 3:30 p.m.
Uncle will be brought to the Niigaanagiizhik Building, 10 Circle Drive, Sault Ste. Marie, Mich.
Community Welcome
Feast at 5 p.m.
Pipe ceremony at 7 p.m.

Tuesday: Visitation all day with feast at 5 p.m. and pipe ceremony at 7 p.m.
Wednesday: Morning visitation until 11 a.m. Releasing Ceremony at 11:30 a.m.
Community Welcome

At the time of the pipe ceremony, each night, the pipe carriers open the floor and ask people to share stories of Uncle. Uncle was a leader in our tribe and family; however, he led an even bigger life within the athletic community and at the federal level. Please share with us how he was a part of your life.

Due to the COVID-19 tribal wide mandate for all tribal buildings, please wear a mask.

Gitchi Miigwech

See the attached flyer for the 2021 Sault Tribe Children’s Christmas Events.

2021 Sault Tribe Children’s Christmas Events

© 2021 - Sault Ste. Marie Tribe of Chippewa Indians. All Rights Reserved.

Photo by Ken Bosma / CC BY