Tulalips honor community groups at gala subdued by sorrow

TULALIP — In 2014, the Tulalip Tribes gave $6.7 million to 312 nonprofits and community groups.

In the past 22 years, the Tribes have donated $63 million through their Tulalip Charitable Fund to nonprofit and service groups throughout Washington state.

But the tribes’ annual Raising Hands gala Oct. 25 had a somber tone following the shootings at Marysville Pilchuck High School.

A traditional welcome that included Quil Ceda Tulalip Elementary student singers was removed from the program. An invocation led by teacher Maria Martin in both Lushootseed and English addressed the tragedy.

“We ask that you take care of the wounded children and their families. Bless the teachers and give them strength,” Martin said.

In an emotional address at the gala, Tulalip board treasurer Glen Gobin asked the assembled to pray for the young people fighting for their lives in the hospital.

Three students have died: Zoe Galasso, 14, and Gia Soriano, 14, and the shooter, Jaylen Fryberg, 15.

Andrew Fryberg, 15, and Shaylee Chuckulnaskit, 14, remain in critical condition. Nate Hatch, 14, is listed in satisfactory condition and was undergoing follow-up surgery Thursday.

“We need to take the time to remember we’re parents and stay involved,” Gobin said Saturday. “Keep our communities in your prayers, for our young are fighting for their lives. Find ways to recognize what each of us brings to the table, and not let it be lost in what has transpired.”

The tribes typically showcase a few of the recipients of the past year during the ceremony with a video presentation. The tribes choose one organization in each of the main categories of giving: social services, art and culture, natural resources and the environment, health care, education and youth, and public services.

This year, the videos played only in the background during the dinner.

The organizations honored for 2014 are The Salvation Army, the Red Curtain Foundation for the Arts, The Mountaineers, Northwest Kidney Center, Team Read, and the Cascade Valley Hospital Foundation, which received a $50,000 donation from the Tulalip Tribes this year for Oso mudslide relief efforts.

Chris Winters: 425-374-4165; cwinters@heraldnet.com. Twitter: @Chris_At_Herald.

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