Stars of Parshall Given Star Quilts

Star Quilt Ceremony at Parshall High School Honors Seniors and Motivates All Students

The 2021 Parshall High School seniors with their satin star quilts bestowed on them from the school and the Northeast Segment Community Board

By Logan J. Davis

The sacred ceremony that honored the seniors of Parshall High School last Wednesday, May 12th, was an occasion that students, family members, relatives, staff and other community members all enjoyed together. The spirit of the event is uniquely special since the native drum ceremony and prayers are such a vital part of the annual event. Dusty Olson and Debbie Hosie are the two coordinators of the Parshall High School Senior Star Quilt Ceremony that has now reached its sixth year. Olson was still feeling the good spirit after the ceremony outside the high school. 

“This is probably the largest class that we have honored in the six years we have been doing this for the seniors,” said Olson. Olson gave words of gratitude for the support of the Parshall school, parents, community development board and MHA Nation. Olson said the ceremony gives the seniors a very memorable moment in their academic lives taking the local native culture and making a special tribute to their milestone in education.  

“Our senior star quilt ceremony is becoming more meaningful every year. It has become a tradition and all the students are looking forward to it and we try our best to provide them with better things and we add a year we add a new twist. This year, we allowed the students have their own quilt giveaway themselves.” Hosie related. 


The Little Shell Singers sang the honoring songs at the star quilt ceremony in Parshall
Sadie Young Bird was given a star quilt from a gracious senior Dusti Olson who gave four quilts to people who inspired her
A special quilt was made and presented to a local police officer at the Parshall High School Senior Star Quilt Ceremony
These three youngsters were part of the audience that attended the Parshall High Star Quilt Ceremony

Parshall High School Principal Amber Young Bird said it was her first star quilt ceremony that was hosted by the high school.

“It has always been more of a community event,” said Ms. Young Bird. “Some of the younger students were motivated by the cultural part of the event and it was nice for so many students to say that they want more than ever to graduate and be given their own star quilt.”

MHA Tribal Police Officer Catlin Sitting Bear was the recipient from the senior class with a special quilt of honor. It had a unique design that honored law enforcement.

Hannie Deegan of Parshall designed and made 15 individual star quilts for the graduating seniors, including one for Elvia Rose Ramirez, who sadly passed away during her senior year. On Monday, the school and family hosted a special memorial and honoring for Ramirez. Special Education paraprofessional, Holly Hannesson made that quilt.

Speakers at the star quilt ceremony with congratulatory words were Dusty Olson, Debbie Hosie, Northeast Segment Councilman Mervin Packineau, and some testimonials from students were read by student counselor Crystal Hayden.

Councilman Packineau stated that the event is now a great local tradition for the students, school and community and is in collaboration with the Northeast Segment Community Board. The tribal councilman also stated that the school and community board wanted to showcase the high school seniors for their accomplishment in the next step of life. He emphasized that student recognition is what the star quilt ceremony is all about. Councilman Packineau was proud to be a part of the star quilt ceremony and encouraged the students to work to pursue higher education and stressed the importance of the native culture. 

The event concluded with Olson and Hosie helping lead a traditional round dance with the seniors while the drum group, Little Shell Singers, did an honor song.