First Nations Elder Diane Michano-Richmond

Michano-Richmond was asked to do the opening prayer and perform a traditional song at the unveiling of the mural at Marathon high school.

While she was growing up, Pic River First Nation resident Diane Michano-Richmond could not understand why her parents did not speak their language.

It was only later in life that she discovered the impacts of the Indian residential school system.

"I didn't know anything about my culture," the First Nations elder said. "But I started learning ceremony way back in 1980, and I started fasting in the Sun Dance and that's where I got all my teachings from."

Students at the Marathon high school have been learning about issues such as the Indian Act, Indian agents, and residential schools as part of an English course to better understand the some of the recurring themes in stories written by Aboriginal authors.

Wall mural created by Marathon High School students

Students at Marathon High School have created a special mural that tells the story of First Nations People. (Submitted by Diane Michano-Richmond)

It was the students who then suggested creating a mural once they learned more about Indian residential school.

"When I saw the mural, I cried," Michano-Richmond said.Michano-Richmond was asked to do the opening prayer at the unveiling of the mural and perform a traditional song and drumming.

Click here, or the audio link to the left, to listen to an interview with Diane Michano-Richmond .