Salute to the first Americans

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Minnesota’s American Indian veterans were honored Thursday with a plaque on the State Capitol Court of Honor. A tribal honor guard of veterans, along with tribal leaders, Gov. Mark Dayton and Veterans Affairs Commissioner Larry Shellito, paid tribute and dedicated the plaque to all Indian veterans who have served in peacetime and war. Indians have historically served in the U.S. Armed Forces at rates proportionately higher than any other group. Erma Vizenor, chairwoman of the White Earth Nation, and the Minnesota Indian Affairs Council had been working since 2005 to secure the memorial. At left, Glynn Crooks, a Vietnam Navy veteran, saluted ­during the entry of the honor guard. Go to to see a photo gallery.

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