OBITUARIES: Thomas Leland Bruner, Lonnie (Wamni Wakan Mani) Weeks

Thomas Leland Bruner

Thomas Leland Bruner died Dec. 24, 2012, from heart failure at Stanford University Medical Center, at age 42.

He grew up in San Leandro, California, and graduated from the University of Southern California with a degree in Communications. He later earned a Masters in International Finance from Thunderbird School of Global Management in Glendale, Arizona.

While at USC, he participated in Semester at Sea, and that experience fostered a lifelong love of world travel. He fell in love with the rugged beauty of California’s Redwood Coast and built his dream home in Trinidad, where he enjoyed golf, fly fishing, kayaking, and skeet shooting.

A natural-born redhead, he was opinionated and passionate about many things, and one of them was teaching economics and finance at Humboldt State University. He tried to show his students how economics affected everything, especially politics and third-world development. Many of his students expressed their appreciation for his ability to make the subject come alive, and some changed their majors to economics after taking his class.

Although he suffered from a lifelong congenital heart condition, he traveled all over the world, including Southeast Asia, South America, Africa and Antarctica. Ten years ago he received a heart transplant, and he and his family were extremely grateful for that gift of more time.

He is survived by his mother Barbara Bruner, sisters Lynne Bruner and Anne Bruner Nash, brother-in-law Jeffrey Nash, niece and nephew Katherine and John Nash, his beloved dog Hannah, and many good friends.

A celebration of Thomas’s life is being planned; email barbmbruner@gmail.com for details. In lieu of flowers, please consider signing an organ donor card.

 

Lonnie (Wamni Wakan Mani) Weeks

Lonnie Weeks (Wamni Wakan Mani) was born on September 30, 1964 in Wolf Point, Montana and he joined our ancestors on December 26, 2012 in his sleep at home. A resident of Trinidad, he was 48.

He is survived by his wife, Winema Huitt-Weeks and his daughters Brandy, Gina, Stormy and Amanda. His son Lance. His pride and joy were his grandchildren. Kody, Faith, Hope, Jai Jr. Jesse, Harmony, Kayla, Issac and Isiah.

He was a veteran of the U.S. Army and served as a Combat Engineer – M1 Tanker. He was a proud lifetime member of A.I.M “American Indian Movement, a  traditional Pipe maker and a Sundancer as a member of the Assiniboine Medicine Lodge. Fort Peck Reservation.

He established, co-owned and was the web master for his and Winema’s beading company “Nakona Eagle Thunder.” He was a Safety Officer and Grant Writer for the Seat-belt Awareness Program in Wolf Point Montana. He taught at the Humboldt State University for 5 years after moving to California and at the Fort Peck Community College which he attended to get his AA in Tribal law and his B.A in Psychology.

He had so many friends and family, both here and in Montana, Oregon and North Dakota and we can’t mention everyone but know that all of you are in his heart and truly a part if his family.

He was proceeded in death by his father Lonnie Weeks Jr. and his beloved Mother Jean Marie Brown-Weeks. Loved and missed by many family and friends.