NAN Mourns Passing of Elder Gregory Koostachin, of Attawapiskat First Nation

THUNDER BAY, ON: Nishnawbe Aski Nation (NAN) Grand Chief Derek Fox, on behalf of the
Executive Council, expresses heartfelt condolences following the passing of NAN Elder Gregory Koostachin, of Attawapiskat First Nation:

“We are very saddened to learn of Greg’s passing in Attawapiskat over the weekend. We are sending our love and prayers to his dear wife Mary, his family, and the entire community.

Greg touched many lives in very meaningful ways. He was well known and respected for his business expertise and dedication to strengthening our communities and our Nation.

We will also remember him fondly for the guidance he provided to the NAN Executive Council over the years. We will miss his presence at our Chiefs Assemblies.

Greg shared his business experience as an economic advisor to his community, and he was always willing to help other First Nation entrepreneurs gain access to opportunities in the business sector. His kindness, friendship and leadership will be remembered fondly by all those who knew him.

Sadly, due to COVID-19, there may be people who may not be able to grieve with his family and community at this time. We will do everything we can to comfort them as we join with them in prayer.”

Greg Koostachin was inducted into the Aboriginal Business Hall of Fame in 2015 for his lifetime commitment to operating businesses that benefited his community, and for mentoring other business owners and aspiring entrepreneurs. He was cited as an example of driving success in his community, and for serving as an exceptional example of what can be achieved through business growth.

As a student in living in Sudbury he organized odd jobs for himself and other students. He returned to Attawapiskat to open a general store and launched several other businesses over the years. His businesses provided much-needed employment for community members and more opportunities for other First Nation-owned businesses. Later in life as a respected Elder he served in advisory roles on the NAN Elder’s Council, the Muskegowuk Council, and Nishnawbe-Aski Legal Services.

Arrangements to honour his life have yet to be announced. We ask everyone to send prayers and
respects to the Koostachin family and those who are mourning over the difficult days ahead.

For more information please contact:
Michael Heintzman,
Director of Communications
Cell: (807) 621-2790
mheintzman@nan.ca