Pyawasit, William L.: Walking On

Zoar, Wisconsin

WILLIAM L. “GIIZHIK” PYAWASIT, 33, passed away peacefully at his home n June 2, 2012. He was born August 26, 1978,  in Antigo, Wisconsin
    
Giizhik was a member of the Menominee Big Drum and had attended school at Keshena Elementary School, Neopit Public, and Menominee Tribal during his early years. He graduated from Menominee Indian High School in 1997, where he had been a member of the wrestling team, the football team and the choir. After high school, Giizhik was employed briefly by the Menominee Nation Casino. In 1999 and 2004, Giizhik toured the United States with a dance tour group called “Spirit”. After his tours with Spirit, Giizhik worked for the Forest County Potawatomi Tribe of Wisconsin as a singing and drumming instructor. For the next four years he taught and mentored the youth group called the “Young Firekeepers”. In October 2011, until his illness, Giizhik was employed by Menominee Indian School District, working with the youth of Keshena Primary School. He was teaching drumming and singing to the “Little Wolf Singers”. Giizhik accomplished much in his short lifetime. His greatest love was singing and traveling to powwows. He began as a traditional dancer when he was a little boy and danced until his teenage years. It was then he started singing with his fathers drum group, the “Smokeytown Singers.” Together they traveled across the U.S. and into Canada to attend powwows. They have composed many songs and made several recordings. Often times, Giizhik and his father traveled to powwows recruiting singers on the way just so they could compete.
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