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Boston elder passes

Community raises funds for funeral expenses

BOSTON -- The Native American Indian Center of Boston is seeking donations
to help pay for the funeral of a beloved community member who passed
recently.

Donna Waiter, 69, was enrolled in the White Earth Chippewa Tribe under her
maiden name of Donna Lorraisen. She succumbed to complications of diabetes
on Nov. 8.

Waiter is survived by a daughter, Edie; a granddaughter, Alexandria; and
two great-grandchildren. Her son, Michael Little Wolf, died about five
years ago.

Waiter moved to Chicago from the White Earth reservation in Minnesota, got
married and moved to Boston in the early 1950s. She had a series of jobs in
Boston, including as an executive housekeeper at Quality Inn, an employee
at a movie theater and a cook at a Greek restaurant.

Waiter was a longtime community member in the Forest Hills area of Boston
and was closely associated with the North American Indian Center of Boston,
beginning as a volunteer during the center's formative years in the early
1970s. She used the center's transportation and health services, and her
children used its employment and training services.

She was involved with and well-known in the American Indian community in
Boston, said Barbara Namias, director of NAICOB's Community Health Program.

"Everybody at NAICOB knew her. Donna was always laughing. She was positive.
She used to love to go to flea markets and sell at flea markets. She would
brighten up the place. If somebody was down, she'd tell some jokes or some
stories from the old days and brighten up everybody's spirits. I miss her
smile. I miss her laugh," Namias said.

Community members and NAICOB friends are working to raise more than $5,000
to cover the family's funeral expenses because Waiter died without any
savings or life insurance, Namias said.

Some money is already pledged. The White Earth Reservation will donate $200
and NAICOB will contribute $100.

Checks can be made out to Alexandria Waiter and mailed to Native American
Center of Boston, attn: Barbara Namias, 105 S. Huntington Ave., Jamaica
Plain, MA 02130.