Edwin Benson, the last-known fluent-speaker of the Mandan language, passed away on December 9, 2016.
Edwin Benson or Ma-doke-wa-des-she, modern Mandan orthography: Wéroke Wáatashe, Iron Bison , was born 1931 on the Fort Berthold Reservation in North Dakota. He taught Mandan at Twin Buttes Elementary School, and was awarded an honorary doctorate from the University of North Dakota in 2009 He has been involved in efforts to teach the basics of Mandan to youth.
That is sad message, I´m very sorry to hear. I had the pleasure to meet Mr. Benson one time personally years ago. A very Kind and generous man, respected and honored elder who worked hard to prerserve his Mandan Language and culture for the future generations. It was a pleasure to meet with him and listen to what he shared with us. May he have a safe travel to the Spirit world and rest in peace.