The visit to my major physician today was an important, periodic checkover.
Essentially, given the fact this is an especially bad version of SLE, things
are more or less OK -- if somewhat rocky.  Since there is no cure for Lupus,
the normal hope of substantive "linear progress" and ultimate and total
Victory in the context of this illness is nonexistent. Our doc, a good
person, remarked that I was "responding well to treatment, so far."  His
qualification is well taken.  With this malevolent and mercurial wraith, one
never knows what is going to happen at any point -- or even how the various
medicines will react.

Considerable blood was drawn for various tests.

During this visit, we learned that a second younger Native woman has just
died of SLE on the nearby Ft Hall Reservation [Shoshone/Bannock.]  This is
two Lupus victims in that setting within a very few weeks.  Our medic was
not involved in their cases, but naturally follows these situations closely
these days.

"It really is a killer," said I to our doctor.

"It really is," said he.  "It almost killed you several times."

Yours, H


Hang in there!!!

Louis Proyect
Marxism list:

Hunter, you might tell your doctor how many people and things in your life
have "almost" killed you and how many times.

I have lost count.

Martha E. Ture
Research Director

Good point; H is ten feet tall and bulletproof.  When he dies it will be something humorous, like a piano falling ten stories, or a crack opening beneath his feet on one of his hikes.
John Salter

It was kind of you to fill me in, i'm sorry to hear your condition is such a bastard. I like many others are thinking of you and hope you manage to keep smiling :) My wife has cancer so I understand partly about the caring role & i'm so glad you have a loving supportive family.

Kindest & warmest regards, Bill W. (Australia).

Hunter Bear,
Hang in there--I'm rooting for you. I also have an incurable and progressive disease that disables and disfigures my hands and feet, but it won't kill me as yours can. It has made typing a challenge, and I can no longer play the piano because my hands are now cupped.
Your knowledge of early Western history makes you a national treasure in my books.

Keith J.
I hope they left you with enough blood to continue the good fight!

David  [McReynolds]


Hi, Hunter

Joanna D. (my partner and a member of the Solidarity Political Committee) and my thoughts are with you.  Thanks for keeping us informed about your current medic visit, tests/ treatment of SLE, and putting SLE a bit in context. 

keep us informed.  Well wishes for you and your family.

Robert C.



NOTE BY HUNTER BEAR [4/18/05]  Snowing.

I sent the following yesterday, posting it on Lupus and BWB.  It got to the
first but not to the second.  I've edited it a little and am sending it out
again.  Much blood was taken from me on Friday but so far I have
heard nothing disturbing.

On another note, Bill Mandel, quite OK and involved in his KPFA radio
reinstatement fight, is very much with BWB -- but has been limited in his
computer usage since his has had serious problems.  He now has, I
gather, another computer arrangement and is being assisted, via remote
control, by a grandson on the East Coast. [What would we do without
our technologically savvy grandchildren or great nephews?!  Well, we might
save on emergency gasoline money donations -- but we'd be stranded and
lonely in cyberspace.]



This is a sort of for the hell of it communication.  Posted only on BWB and
the small Lupus list.

Although I had done little hiking of any kind for three weeks -- feet are
not too helpful and hurt and we have had lots of snow and dangerous ice and
finally very slippery mud -- Maria and I and Hunter [Shelty] ventured out
for a short one yesterday morning.  I contemplated about 1 1/2 miles round
trip.  Initially, all seemed reasonably OK, even on an especially steep
uphill slope.  But coming down, I sensed mounting problems with my feet and
legs.  By the time we got to the seasonally closed BLM gate and the paved
street that, 100 yards hence goes past our home, I was not sure [for the
first time ever] that I could make it.  Despite my best efforts, I could
not.  Part of me felt like falling down and melting away but, of course,
I fought that off -- and I stood my ground!

Regrettably, we had for the first time ever, forgotten our cell
phone. I leaned, clinging somewhat, onto a neighbor's parked pickup.  Maria
rushed home and she and Josie rushed back in Josie's Jeep Liberty.  Once
home, I got to our door with a little assistance and then, with neither
assistance nor problems, up our staircase to the main level.  After I had
rested, watered, and coffeed-up, I did feel much better.  Problem seems to
be going down steep stretches.  This may be simply one more brief and
passing Negative [there are many of them] or it may be more.  We will hold
off hiking for a few days while I spend a little time each day simply
walking outside in the setting around our house. [It is going to be raining
to some extent anyway which leads to mud this time of year.]  Fortunately,
this did not happen 'way up and 'way back -- or I'd still be camped up there
by a slow-burning juniper fire.

I am not drawing any drastic conclusions about this.  It may in part have
something to do with current medicinal shifts that I have been undergoing.
Or it could be a "Lupus flare." We shall watch it closely -- and we will get
through this setback.

Following this, I called a quite good neighbor of ours, who is Assistant to
the LDS Ward Bishop.  His wife, who teaches at Pocatello High School, has
always been a prime supporter and advocate for Thomas.  [In the Mormon
Church, a Ward is made up of several hundred people and the Bishop is the
primary leader.  Several wards make up a Stake.]  As I have mentioned
before, his oldest daughter, at 19 in 2000, was struck by SLE.  I had not
known her but, hearing that she was profoundly ill,  somehow  assumed it was
something like Leukemia.  But, as I learned in due course, it is SLE and she
has had a very tough time.   He and I talked for a good while and then he
offered to call his daughter, presently in Montana but preparing to enter
ISU at Pocatello, and have her call me.

She did call immediately.  And we talked congenially for a very long time
indeed.  I had never visited directly with a fellow SLE victim before and
she may not have either.  Our experiences are fairly parallel -- although
all SLE cases are their own individual things. She was struck suddenly, and
mine came up a little more slowly.  In each case, diagnosis was slow -- many
weeks. Prednisone saved her life [as it probably saved mine] but produced
for her very serious bone problems  necessitating complicated surgical
treatment.  And while I have missed the bone problems [hopefully] since
there is a newer medicine [Actonel] which deals with that in an ostensibly
preventative fashion, Pred gave me a case of [psuedo] diabetes.  She shifted to
Imuran -- and is now phasing that back somewhat; I am shifting from Pred to
heavy doses of Plaquenil  along with a little Pred.  Each of us is taking
many other pills as well.  As a result of this conversation, I am giving
more thought to taking Imuran -- which has helped her without the sometimes
dangerous side effects it can engender.  Each of us has sought and learned
much info indeed about SLE -- most of this on our own.

She is a strong young woman, full of fighting spirit and optimism --  and I
certainly try to be those things as well.  She and I encouraged each other
to call anytime -- and, when she returns to Poky, we will have a long face-
to-face talk.  SLE is rare and an apparent effort to start a Lupus Support
Group in this region seems to have failed to catch fire.  I do know that,
nationally, some Lupus victims are loath to talk about it.

And then, I did that which we have planned to do for a long time --
and about which I have quietly consulted with our basic family:  making
special provision for Thomas in our Communalistic Will.  The basic heirs are
Maria, John, Peter, and Josie -- but Eldri and I have worked out a creative
and tangible approach which pleases Thomas and All.  He, BTW, may wind up
making far more dinero than any of us ever have.  Now finishing up five
years at ISU -- massive pre-med stuff and a psych major as well -- he is
heading off to full-dress medical school within the next few weeks.
[Thomas, whose mother is Maria, is our grandson/son.]

As Ever, Hunter Bear

 Abenaki/St. Regis Mohawk
 Protected by Na´shdo´i´ba´i´
 and Ohkwari'

Check out Surprise Tribute:

In our Gray Hole, the ghosts often dance in the junipers and sage, on the
game trails, in the tributary canyons with the thick red maples, and on the
high windy ridges -- and they dance from within the very essence of our own
inner being. They do this especially when the bright night moon shines down
on the clean white snow that covers the valley and its surroundings.  Then
it is as bright as day -- but in an always soft and mysterious and
remembering way. [Hunter Bear]


The negative, depressing side of this is clear enough.

The positive side is the clarity with which you have confronted the
problem, and continue to confront it
- and deal with it, coffee and all. One would hardly know from reading your accounts of just how
gravely ill you are. The mind, clearly, ain't.

David  [McReynolds]  4/25/05


From Joyce Ladner [4/20/05]

Dear John,
    I am so glad to know that you are holding your own.  Old soldiers never
die.  You aren't even fading away but going stronger than ever.  If given a
choice, give me the ability to be mentally tough any day over physical
strength.  I recently began making necklaces--with large ethnic beads,
especially in turquoise.  Would you happen to know anyone among the Native people who sell the beads and pendants for jewelry making?  I am very interested in establishing a contact with Native distributors.  My very best to Eldri.  I know she's probably got that loom humming busy!

All the best,

[Joyce follows up with, " Thanks a lot John Hunter ().  I like John because
it reminds me of the John who led the Jackson boycott.  I respect Hunter a
lot too.  Thanks for the list of bead merchants.  I've started going down
the list already. .  ."

Take care,





An Anglo woman, 78, died a couple of days ago at Pocatello after a long
battle with SLE Lupus.  Her death follows the fast moving Lupus deaths of
the two young Shoshone/Bannock women at nearby Ft Hall a few weeks ago.
This latest victim had sought to start a local Lupus support group.  But by
the time we heard a bit about it, and Eldri called the lady's husband, the
small group had faded and has not revived.  SLE is pretty rare and its
victims aren't always prone to talk about it.  From what I know of it, SLE
tends to either kill fast [I almost died, of course, three times at its
outset] or, failing that, does a prolonged "subversive" thing with one of
its several basic goals being the kidneys.  As far as I know, my good
neighbor -- the young woman, now in Montana with SLE -- is doing OK.  For my
part, I am pleased that the considerable blood taken from me for testing a
little over a week ago has sounded no alarms.  H

Glad to hear that! 

Paul [Lefrak]  4/24/05
For my
> part, I am pleased that the considerable blood taken
> from me for testing a
> little over a week ago has sounded no alarms.



After having been urged repeatedly by my various Lupus physicians, I had a
major eye exam --from an ophthalmologist -- on Thursday, 4/28. Although
things have been rocky for me lately, and much of the family had a sense of
foreboding about this eye thing, it turned out essentially OK.  No signs of
diabetic effect, no glaucoma, no evidence of erosion via Prednisone and
Plaquenil. [Had this latter been indicated, it could have forced me into
inevitable usage of possibly problematic chemo drugs such as Imuran or
Methotrextate or Cytoxin.]  Anyway, this doc's assessment is that my vision
is basically quite good and, with conventional glasses, will easily be 20/20
in both eyes. Although I was a little defensive about it, he saw no
particular problem with my store-bought cheapie glasses -- but did give me a
prescription for new ones on which I will most likely act.  Eldri, Josie,
Thomas were all there with me.  The ophthalmologist, an old Western doc
type, knew all about my SLE [and diabetes] and  certainly does see it and
very possibly the medicines as potentially serious eye threats.  He will
check again in four months.  But the bottom line is that, despite my not
having any kind of eye check since 1981 [and that from an optometrist],
things with my eyes are presently OK.

When the exam was over and recalling my nine year old days as head of our
Pirate Club [the nearest ocean was far, far away], I quipped that, "Had
everything gone to hell here, I would at least get a black patch and a
parrot."  The doctor and Thomas did think that was very funny.

Best, H

 Abenaki/St. Regis Mohawk
 Protected by Na´shdo´i´ba´i´
 and Ohkwari'


Note by Hunter Bear:

Lest our good RBB list get a little too stereotypical, here is a page from
another book.  I did a lot of trapping when I was much younger.  Initially,
it involved conventional fur bearing animals.  Later, with two hundred
Victor Number 4 Double Springs, I trapped predators.  My last heavy trapping
was in the late winter and spring of 1957 in the Dry Creek Basin/Secret
Mountain/Boynton Canyon section of Northern Arizona [very near Sycamore
Wilderness].  I wrote a short story about that -- "Last of the Wild Ones" --
which netted me four hundred bucks less agent's commission, and it
subsequently appeared as the well illustrated lead fictional piece in Argosy
11/57 [a "man's magazine" with a huge circulation.]  But when my pet
coyote [Good] joined me, my commitment to trapping began to waver and had
essentially ended long before my present companion, half-Bobcat Cloudy,
entered my life.  On the other hand, there are many people -- including many
Native people in the 'States and Canada -- for whom trapping is a very
legitimate way of life and economic bastion.  One remaining Victor Number 4
Double Spring remains with me -- on the wall in this very room -- and I
continue [as I have since I was 13], my sub to the monthly Fur/Fish/Game.
Continuing to receive many queries about all sorts of things, I had answered
one on solid Native oriented arts and crafts supply outlets, when a question
on trapping appeared.  My response:

Mostly, I used Victor Double Springs and, in the latter stages, almost
always Number 4s.  For smaller animals, earlier, I used Victor Double
Springs in Number 2s and Victor Jumps, in Number 2s.  Muskrats could be
handled with a Single Spring in 2s or a 1 1/2.  I almost always partially
and lightly "buried" my trap [unless it was a water set] with the jaws even
or slightly below the earth level and put a few old pine needles or a little
waxed paper under the pan. [A snow set would be roughly the same.] I might
often sprinkle a very few dried leaves or pine needles on top, but I don't
think I ever used waxed paper on top [some people did].  Sometimes with land
sets I used lure that I concocted myself.  I also, depending on the animal
target and its keenness of smell, would use traps that I boiled in pine

Various variations.

I may have used an occasional Newhouse but generally it
was always a Victor for me.  H

 Abenaki/St. Regis Mohawk
 Protected by Na´shdo´i´ba´i´
 and Ohkwari'

Check out Surprise Tribute:

In our Gray Hole, the ghosts often dance in the junipers and sage, on the
game trails, in the tributary canyons with the thick red maples, and on the
high windy ridges -- and they dance from within the very essence of our own
inner being. They do this especially when the bright night moon shines down
on the clean white snow that covers the valley and its surroundings.  Then
it is as bright as day -- but in an always soft and mysterious and
remembering way. [Hunter Bear]

All power to Cloudy!  And Good!
  [friedman]  4/23/05



A member of our small Lupus discussion list, Toto Too!, posted this obit/SLE
lupus death of a young Salish Native woman which occurred a few days ago.
As the  obituary indicates, her mother had also died of SLE. I am somewhat
familiar with the Omak, Washington area from a very long time back.  I'm not
aware of any unusually negative environmental situations in that region --
used to be lots of lumber and sawmill work and I am sure there is still
some -- and I think this very sad situation once again underscores the
heavily genetic foundation of Lupus.

Last fall, Joan Mulholland sent us clips from a very large newstory in the
Washington Post indicating that two major drug companies are working to
develop the first new basic Lupus medicine in 45 years or so.  The articles
indicated this might be available to Lupus victims in the fall of 2005.  I
have heard nothing further on it and my own primary physician -- though
quite alert to its possibility -- is not overly optimistic.  But it's
obviously well worth hoping for.  And we certainly do.

What did come [after a brief subscription mixup] was the Spring 2005 issue
of Lupus Now, the slick 48 page three-times-a-year somewhat "popular"
magazine of Lupus Foundation of America.  It is pretty well done -- but I
have often been privately critical of its tendency to load up on smiling
photo faces when the disease and its effects are just plain downright
malevolent and frequently lethal.  This issue, however, though it had a few
smiling faces, was about as reassuring as the casket ads which increasingly
grace the back cover of my AMVETS magazine.  Its primary piece, essentially
quite well done, discusses in decipherable language the effects of SLE on
the central nervous system.

This dimension of things has been of increasing interest to Lupus
researchers -- especially in the last several years.  Some estimate that 80
per cent of SLE victims ultimately face challenges in this  obviously
critical area.  The article provides a long list of effects characterizing
this frontier, of which I have only a few:  neuropathy [painful] in my feet,
sometimes tingling hands, occasional eye focus problems [the eyes themselves
are inherently OK], occasional headaches [traditionally rare for me], and
occasional problems in coordinating limbs [e.g., walking dependably]. [My
oft fatigue is one of a large number of more general SLE characteristics.] I
should add that this issue of Lupus Now does seem to have an unusual number
of photos showing folks in wheelchairs.

On the other hand, my cognitive abilities seem just fine and I have had no
personality shifts. My memory seems quite OK. When I spoke  for almost an
hour at Idaho Falls a week ago, I did have to sit down for my usual verbally
vigorous performance. [It's now tough to stand for long periods.]  But it
was indeed a vigorous and very well received speech and, as always, I used
no notes whatsoever.  I started off by saying that I see the present
national administration as "the most wretched one I've known in my 71

I am not a roll-over 'possum and I have no intention of becoming one.

Our grandson/son, Thomas Gray Salter, graduated from ISU yesterday following
five intensive years of full-scale pre-Med and a Psych major. [Our youngest
daughter, Josie, graduated awhile back in Social Work from ISU.]  Thomas and
Mimmie will be heading off to Minnesota in a few weeks where Thomas will
plunge into full scale medical school.  The other day, I happened to read a
paper he had done on SLE for advanced Biochemistry.  I did get through it --
much impressed -- but it is another language [and a long way from even
sociological theory.]

Half Bobcat Cloudy Gray, she of the Cuddly Claws, sends her best to Sam

Yours, H

Rachael Ann Sam, 24-1/2 years old, left for the spirit world on
Thursday, May 5, 2005, at Deaconess Hospital in Spokane, after a five year
battle with lupus.

            Rachael was born on the Desautel Summit Pass on October 20,
1980, to the proud parents Kenneth Dwight Sam and Terri Lee Adolph who
preceded her in death. Her mother died in October of 1990 from the same
illness. Her father passed away in March of 1991, just five months after her
mother left this world. Rachael Ann was raised by her grandparents Eneas and
Theresa Sam at Omak Lake all of her years. Her grandfather also preceded her
in death July of 1993, her grandmother Theresa and her Uncle Gene cared for
her with loving devotion.

            Her schooling began at Paschal Sherman Indian School from
kindergarten through the fourth grade. She finished her grade school years
at Virginia Grange School in Okanogan. She graduated from high school at
Okanogan in 1997. During her high school years, she was involved with band
and choir. She attended a jazz competition in Moscow, Idaho. She was also
involved with the FHA and went on a trip to San Diego, Calif., with the high
school FHA group.

            Her biggest dream in life was to become a teacher of her native
language, Salish. She was very fluent when she spoke, the elders were proud
and told her they wished there were more youth to carry on the tradition.

            Her hobbies were lake fishing, hunting with her uncles, going on
drives with her Uncle Gene and picking wild flowers. She also loved picking
berries and gathering roots with her grandmother. She had a passion for
riding horses and playing basketball. She liked attending church with her
grandmother. She liked to read a lot and also enjoyed watching the old
classical movie channel. Scary movies were also one of her favorites. She
liked all kinds of music from jazz to western but mostly traditional native

            She is survived by her grandmother Theresa Sam; her brothers:
Justin Dwight Sam, Byron Joseph Sam, Lawrence Jacob Chaney, Colton Jade
Seely; a sister Stephanie Bar, uncles Gene, Gary and Jerry Sam, Vince
Porter, Justin Tvergerg; aunts Patricia Porter, aunt/mom Connie Sam Chaney,
Dianna Grunlose Danielle Flemming; step-mother Lynn Lonnecker; sister-in-law

Heidi Sam; nephew Tyler Eneas Sam; cousins: Toshina Marie Sam, Jaissa
Darlene Grunlose, Gerald Kenneth Sam and Randi Rae Louis Sam.

            Family rosary was held at the Theresa Sam residence May 7.
Rosary was held at the Omak Longhouse on May 8 with funeral services at St.
Mary's Mission Catholic Church on May 9. Burial followed at the Kartar
Valley Cemetery with a dinner following at the Omak Longhouse.

            Precht-Harrison-Nearents Chapel of Okanogan, was in charge of


Dear Hunter:

The thoughts of the Bloomington IN CP Club are with you always.

Jim H


My congratulations to Thomas!!

Please ask him to email me the SLE paper.  That way I too can understand one word out of three.

And my best to the clawed divinity and the rest of the family.

Sam Friedman
National Development and Research Institutes
71 West 23d Street, 8th floor
New York, NY 10010


 Abenaki/St. Regis Mohawk
 Protected by Na´shdo´i´ba´i´
 and Ohkwari'

Check out Surprise Tribute:

In our Gray Hole, the ghosts often dance in the junipers and sage, on the
game trails, in the tributary canyons with the thick red maples, and on the
high windy ridges -- and they dance from within the very essence of our own
inner being. They do this especially when the bright night moon shines down
on the clean white snow that covers the valley and its surroundings.  Then
it is as bright as day -- but in an always soft and mysterious and
remembering way. [Hunter Bear]






























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