Told by Eliza Webb
Translated and transcribed by Brian Webb
Another story I’ve heard of my father was during the fall when ice begins to form. People jigged for fish on the river where we stayed. People caught lots of speckled trout. Other people from far away camps came by dogteams to come and fish on the river. This is at A Nadoyashich (Little Point) and the river below. This was a good spot for catching fish when the ice first started forming along the shore. Sometimes, the river would freeze all the way across and you couldn’t see the dangerous spots on the river.
My dad and mom went out one time. They went with Daniel Snowboy. He was still a young boy. They went out by dogteam to jig for fish. I didn’t go with them. I barely remember that time. I only heard the story told of my dad when he fell through the ice while they were out fishing.
A flock of ptarmigan landed on the other side of the river. He took his gun and went across on the ice. He fell through the ice completely. He had his gun in his hand. He let go of his gun. There was a lot of slush below and this was what stopped him from going deep into the river.
Their companion, Daniel, was still a young boy. My mom said that Daniel was really crying. My mom saved my dad. I think she threw rope to him. She was able to rescue him.
My mom hauled my dad onto the ice. My dad stood on the solid ice and turned back to where he came from. He went to get his gun. It was in the slush. He probably saw his gun there. He was able to retrieve his gun.
Your grandmother said, “I despised him so much. He went back to where I hauled him out.” And Daniel was wailing. I suppose he thought that my dad was really gone. This was the story told about my dad.
I suppose they came back to the camp right away. This was how we knew what had happened to them; my dad had fallen through the ice when he went to the flock of ptarmigan across the river.