Germaine Means

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April 13, 1933 - March 27, 2014.

The funeral service for Germaine Means, 80, of Eagle Butte was on Wednesday, April 2, 2014 at the Tiospaye Topa School Gym in LaPlant. Burial was at St. Paul’s Episcopal Cemetery in LaPlant under the direction of Kesling Funeral Home of Mobridge. Germaine passed away Thursday, March 27, 2014 at Rapid City Regional Hospital. Germaine Elizabeth White Eyes was born on April 13, 1933 at the Old Cheyenne Agency to Delaine and Christine (Dupris) White Eyes. Upon her birth she was given the Lakota name Waste La Ka Pi Win “Everybody Likes Her Good Woman” by Chief Francis White Bull in Cherry Creek. In later years she passed on her first Lakota name and became Maka-Obla-Win “Woman of the Prairie” given by her son, Richard “Bucky” Means, after he returned from Desert Storm. Germaine was raised on Cottonwood Creek north of Ridgeview by her parents and grandmothers Elizabeth and Rose White Eyes. She was very proud of her Dupris heritage and the legacy of her great-great-grandfather, Fred Dupris, Sr. Some of Germaine’s fondest memories were of her father Delaine and attach sardine cans to the trees down by the Cottonwood Creek. He would give her pieces of bread crumbs to put in the cans, to make bird feeders for the snow birds. At Easter time they would go to the creek bank and build rabbit nests for the Easter bunny so he could place eggs for them to find Easter morning. Another memory was of Grandpa Louie White Eyes taking down his hand drum and singing Lakota songs at night and ending with an evening prayer. Germaine attended school at Eagle Butte, Timber Lake and the Old Cheyenne Agency. During her school years at the Old Cheyenne Agency, she participated in basketball, band, cheerleading, agriculture, and Glee Club, and worked in the school’s vegetable garden. Through basketball she met the love of her life and future husband, Cecil Means. She married Cecil on September 15, 1958 in Pierre. They raised seven children on the ranch in old Armstrong County. In the beginning Germaine and Cecil raised Hereford cattle. She eventually transitioned to Black Angus. In the mid 1960’s, Germaine and Cecil were 4-H Club leaders and developed the Armstrong Rattlers 4-H Club, whose colors were purple, white and gold. Her many careers included: Swift Bird Job Corps Center Office Manager, IHS Medical Records Clerk at the Old Cheyenne River Agency and at the Eagle Butte hospitals, and Rehab Office Manager. She was elected to serve as District 6 Tribal Council Representative for three consecutive terms. She went on to serve for 26 years and retired as the Central Records Director. She was always a true Tribal historian. When a question came up, people would say, “Let’s ask Germaine.” Germaine was appointed and served as vice-chairman of the “Wisdom Keepers” board, and she served during three CRST Tribal Chairman terms. As a strong Republican, Germaine believed in positive relationships of political and social groups. She was on the first South Dakota State-Tribal Reconciliation Committee, and the honoree for the Spirit of the Prairie Award. As a true humanitarian, it was her endeavor to promote reconciliation for all people to get along in today’s society. She helped establish the CRST Desert Storm Circle Support Group, which grew into a group that welcomed home all returning soldiers from war/conflicts. She was a strong supporter of veterans; she often provided food for them at memorial services in La Plant. Humbleness and kindness along with respect for nature were attributes of Germaine. She lived these up to the last days of her life. Germaine was a very spiritual woman with deep roots in the Episcopal Church. She was her children’s catechism teacher and loved receiving her holy communion. Germaine was survived by seven children— Donna Rae (James) Petersen of Ridgeview, Connie Kae Means of Mound City, Galen (Sharon) Means of Armstrong County, Cecil II “C.J.” Means (C. Samuel) of Eagle Butte, Richard “Bucky” (Malinda) Means of Laramie, WY, Carmen (Don) Marshalek of Stafford, VA, Shawn Means of Eagle Butte and adopted daughter Tammy Lafferty of Rocky Ford; sisters, Mona Demery and Arbana Thompson of Eagle Butte, and Eldora Black Eagle of Dupree; 53 grand and great-grandchildren and one great-great-grandchild; and numerous nieces, nephews, cousins and Godchildren. She is preceded in death by her husband Cecil, her parents, brothers Richard White Eyes and Arnold Cloud Eagle, and numerous in-laws.
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