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An online trade journal covering the North America hemp industry: agriculture, processing, marketing, research, business and regulatory news, and updates. Strong focus on hemp farming and developments in Canada.

Friday, December 21, 2007

White Plume Home Burns To Ground 

Crossposted at Booman Tribune and Daily Kos.

This morning I got up to go to work like every weekday morning. I work an early AM shift, but I still check my email before I leave. This morning there was an email with this stunning subject line in my Vote Hemp and HIA Board in boxes "Fwd: White Plume home burned down today."

Alex White Plume on his back steps
Pine Ridge Indian Reservation - Manderson, SD
AP Photo/Chet Brokaw

The email was from Tom Cook and he writes:

8:30 pm Chadron. Debra White Plume just called, & asked me to contact you with word their home burned up this morning, around 9am.

Still in her housecoat when discovering the blaze, she only had time to snatch her grandson, pipe, purse, and cellphone & get out the door. Everything burned. Total loss. All papers even computers. 'It all happened in a half hour,' she said.

Alex had left earlier for Gordon, & came back around noon to bemoan the debris. By nightfall the Fire Marshall had concluded it was an electrical fire.

My first though was to put up a diary here and on The Hemp Report and try and get donations to help out Alex and his family. But it had to wait so I would not be late to work. Now that I'm home I read that Alex and his family may have a place to stay temporarily at Tom Cook's place in Nebraska. They still are in need of clothes and food. I am going to use my PayPal account at The Hemp Report to accept donations and send the proceeds to Tom Cook for Alex. Please click below to make a donation. The email address for PayPal donations is hempreport@mac.com:


I hope to be able to get enough donations to get them some Safeway and Target gift cards. If anyone has a late model Apple Macintosh that they would like to donate to the cause you can email me at hempreport@mac.com or through The Hemp Report.

If you would like to know more about Alex, please check out the Standing Silent Nation page at PBS.

I hope that this is well received by the community and if you can, please make a donation.



posted by Tom  # 12:32 PM
I am so sorry, I heard about your loss and want to help . I tried to paypal 20$ but the link doesn't work....I will check it again tomorrow.. Good Luck and Love.. Jenny, Joe and Family..
I have fixed the Pay Pal donation button. If it still does not work for you, please go to https://www.paypal.com/ and click on the "Send Money" tab, in the "Send Money" box enter hempreport@mac.com in the To: box and proceed as normally.
tom, i noticed a grandson may need some items as well. was wondering how old/big/sizes? he is? and if they would take item donations? my email is deilia9@hotmail.com if you are able to get this info to me. thanks
lisa in indiana.
im not a member of this blog, but read forwards from jack herer's myspace...
I too lost everything to an electrical fire in 96 and feel your pain. No one came to my aid but the red cross. I could only give 10.00, but I hope it helps in some small way. If there is anything else I can do please let me know. People helping people is what its all about.
Alex White Plume writes: "We appreciate the generosity of everyone but we cannot accept donations of old clothes. We are going to rebuild and need financial support."
I am sorry for your loss, and yet feel immense relief your family is safe.

We have a lot of support from the community of Manitou Springs, CO. Here's the latest communication from Char:
Hey Rob, just wanted to catch up with you~ Things are going GREAT. Zach and I made some great forward progress yesterday ;)
We now have the support of Many of the businesses in Manitou Springs, The Hemp Store, a clear leader in the community there!!! We are now hooked up with the support of some local bands and have the cooperation and participation of The Ancient Mariner in sponsering a place to hold the Event. We are now waiting to find out the dates that we can book for.
We also put out flyers with info about the Lakota and Alex with Alexs' direct contact info. They are located at various businesses around Manitou Springs along with donation boxes.
The community of Manitou Springs has fully embraced this cause and are ready to make this happen. It is the greatest honor to be able to help in this way. Please pass this along up the chain and let everyone know that they have our prayers and support. I'll keep you posted.

~onelove~KEEP IT LIT~Pass the PeAcE~

With hope and generosity we will make this happen.


The WP's are doing good. The weather has warmed up here at the end of the week, and the kids will have to start back to school soon. I'm acting as a contact point for Alex concerning rebuilding with hemp. I have e-mailed Grant Moorcroft in Madoc, Ontario about his hemp bales, and Camels Back Construction, also a canadian firm, about bale consultation; they have worked specifically with hemp bales and hempcrete, and are well known for it. I will give an update if I hear from them. We would like to make the home off-grid, so we are looking to buy/sell/trade renewable energy equipment. The family is OK in the clothing department; Alex has been hauling away what is left of the debris. Everyone is still kind of getting their mind around the whole thing. Matt Rankin 605-722-1897 matt@highplainswind.com
Update, 1/6/08
We can get hemp bales from Grant Moorcroft in Ontario, and it looks like we could be ready to put up a bale home starting in May. There are no border crossing issues with the hemp as it has been done before. Alex and Deb are hanging in, ready to get under roof, so we are building a small structure immediately. Any and all financial help is greatly appreciated, and thank you to everyone for being helpful and supportive. Matt Rankin 605-722-1897
Update 1/30/08:
Wopila to all our friends who have helped us through this setback. We have built a new structure on part of the original foundation, it will be a temporary home until we build a larger one this spring. Then this first building will become office space for OWE AKU. The WP's should be moved in within two weeks time; I will take some pictures and post them. It is harder to do this work in winter, and we appreciate all the help. Anyone out there with hemp related home products or ideas, please get in touch with me at my new number: 605-642-2601 cell: 605-639-1911 matt@highplainswind.com Pelamaya! Matt Rankin
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