American Indian Chief David Beautiful Bald Eagle Jr. dies

FILE - In this 2013 file photo, Chief David Beautiful Bald Eagle Jr., is seen in Deadwood, S.D. Bald Eagle, a longtime representative of South Dakota's Lakota people, died Friday, July 22, 2016, at home on the Cheyenne River Indian Reservation. He was 97. (Tom Griffith/Rapid City Journal via AP, File)

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (AP) – A longtime representative of South Dakota’s Lakota people, Chief David Beautiful Bald Eagle Jr., has died on the Cheyenne River Indian Reservation. He was 97.

Bald Eagle died at home Friday and a traditional four-day wake began in his home Monday.

Charlie Rooks with Rooks Funeral Home in Eagle Butte says Bald Eagle’s funeral is scheduled for Friday at Black Hills National Cemetery in Sturgis.

Bald Eagle was born in a tepee in 1919 and for decades he was the face of the Lakota people in state tourism promotions.

The Rapid City Journal reports that he served in the Army during World War II. He later became a champion Lakota dancer, rodeo cowboy and chief of the Minicoujou band. He also appeared in movies, including the Oscar-winning “Dances with Wolves.”

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