Requiescat in pace: Keith “Tulugaq” Crowe

Just found out about this:
Keith Crowe: Jan. 30, 1927 — May 16, 2010

I first encountered Keith Crowe’s name through his wonderful little book: A History of the Orginal Peoples of Northern Canada. First published in 1974 to serve as a text book for high school and college students, then revised in 1991, it has yet to be surpassed.

But many Inuit of a certain age remember him for a much better reason: he was one of those rare government officials who never failed to treat others with love and respect.

I’ve already received several forwarded emails from those who can describe the essence of his personality far better than I can.

I haven’t had time to get permission to quote them yet, so I’ll let them speak anonymously until I do:

Taipsumani tamaani Aatuvaami takujariulaursimajara Tulugaq, 1967-mi. Inungnut tunnanarutimmarialuulaurtuq tamaani Aatuvaami, uvagut Inuktigut ungasiktualuutilluta angajuqqaaptinnut. Inungnik nagligusummarilaurtuq, nalunalaunngittuq. Kinguniqarniartuq inuusia.

When we Inuit were sent down south by the Canadian Government in the 1960’s, I first met Tulugaq in 1967 in Ottawa. Keith was always a “welcoming committee” for all Inuit. He made our life easier in those days, especially, when we were all so far away from our parents. It was pretty obvious to me that he loved Inuit very much. He spoke Inuktitut. It seemed he always had time for everybody. We Inuit lived down south, during the time of colonialism of government in Canada. Keith was always an advocate for Inuit and our cause. He worked on issues that matter to Inuit. He will be remembered fondly by all those who met him.


I remember the first time I ever met him, I may have been four years old. He came to Kangirsuk with George Koneak. My mother was a widow and she told me that he was there to help people like her…that he got us our oil stove and that we would no longer need to find wood for our stove. One day following this visit, I saw a raven while I was playing outside and ran inside to tell my mother that the Tulugaaluk that gave us the oil stove was flying around… 🙂

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