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Bury My Heart With Tonawanda

It is 1875. John, a young man with Down syndrome, is being taken to an institution. His well-to-do father is ashamed of him and wants to send him away to a place called the "Asylum for Idiots" in Syracuse NY. But John is an active, inquisitive young man and runs away. He finds acceptance and a new life with the Seneca Indian Nation who live at the Tonawanda Indian Reservation. The story tells us about the culture and beliefs of the Seneca Nation and also about their views about people with disabilities. They saw them as being gifted and treated them with kindness and respect. Individuals with developmental disabilities were not shunned or put away in their society. This is a story that enlightens us about the positive effects of love and respect and educates us about historical stereotypes that were challenged by a culture thought to be primitive and savage.

CAST: Steve Blum, Eric Neatrour, Christine Kurvits

DIRECTOR: Gary Sundown