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The Week That Was: The Big Stories in Indian Country, January 12, 2014

American Indian news stories from the past week, on topics including Chief Wahoo, Canadian residential schools and Sundance Film Festival.
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It's our roundup of the stories that mattered most in Indian country:

PLANE DOWN: A small aircraft crashed and broke apart in a field on the Shoshone-Bannock reservation on Thursday January 9, prompting warnings from public safety officials as the plane was buffeted about in high winds. “The aircraft is not secure and high winds are moving the aircraft through the field,” the tribes’ Department of Public Safety said in a statement.

BENEFICIARIES WANTED: The federal government has been unable to locate some 30,000 Indian beneficiaries who are collectively owed about $32 million of the $3.4 billion Cobell trust fund settlement.

SUNDANCE '14: A documentary by Sterlin Harjo and the drama Drunktown's Finest lead the sate of indigenous movies headed to the Sundance Film Festival, which begins January 16.

WIRELESS ON THE WAY: Thanks to a $32 million grant from the National Telecommunications and Information Administration's (NTIA) Broadband Technology Opportunities Program to the Navajo Tribal Utility Authority, residents of the 27,000 square-mile Navajo Reservation will soon have access to a modern wireless communications system.

WHERE'S WAHOO: The Cleveland Indians organization has slowly phased out its Chief Wahoo logo in favor of a "Block C", but the team hasn’t eliminated the Chief completely.

PRESERVATION PRIORITY: More than 100 tribal nations will share $2.2 million in federal grants for historic preservation.

THE SAD STORY UNMASKED: The Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC), mandated to unmask what really went on at the Canadian residential schools, has documented the deaths of at least 4,000 children during that chapter in Canada’s history. And that’s just the ones they know about.

ANOTHER HURDLE CLEARED: The Bureau of Indian Affairs has approved the Mashpee Wampanoag Tribe’s gaming compact with the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, setting another major landmark on the tribe’s journey toward building Project First Light, a $500 million destination resort casino in the southeastern part of the state.

POWLESS GOES ORANGE: Three time All-American and Indoor World Championship silver medalist Neal Powless is the new head coach for the Dutch National Lacrosse Team that is headed to Denver.

FIGHT GOES ON: An Arizona Supreme Court ruling enables the Hopi Tribe to continue its legal challenge to the Snowbowl ski resort’s spraying of artificial snow made from treated wastewater onto the sacred San Francisco Peaks.