Yukon Party Caucus Statement on the Passing of Elder Percy Henry

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                                                                                          April 9, 2024

“I was saddened to learn of the passing of much-respected Tr’ondëk Hwëch’in Elder Percy Henry.

“Henry certainly had a life well-lived, and his impact on the Yukon will be felt for generations to come. He was one of the Yukon Chiefs who travelled to Ottawa in 1973 to present the groundbreaking document ‘Together Today for Our Children Tomorrow to the federal government. He was a champion for his people.

“Even into his 90s, Henry was active in his community. He is to be admired for passing on his traditional knowledge and First Nations culture to younger generations. He was one of the last fluent Hän language speakers and spent much time teaching others about the language through writing, the spoken word, and even through a children’s book.

“On behalf of the Yukon Party Caucus, I pass along our condolences to Henry’s family, friends, and his community.


-- Leader Currie Dixon


“Born to Gwich’in parents, Joe and Annie Henry, the family moved to Dawson City in the 1930’s. Percy became Chief of the Tr’ondëk Hwëch’in and was part of the delegation to Ottawa to bring land claims to the Yukon. He was very active in the changes happening for Yukon First Nations – a leader of note for the Tr’ondëk citizens.

“He and his wife of many years, Mabel, were chosen as Mr. and Mrs. Yukon. He also received the Order of Yukon for his contributions to our Territory.

“Having known Percy for all my life, he was a calm and patient soul, who always welcomed you with a smile. He will be missed for his steady quiet presence. 

“We are losing these gentle giants, but Percy has left a legacy that will live on for years to come. I will attend the funeral to honour his passing and ensure our family pays the respects that this Elder has earned.”

--Geraldine Van Bibber, MLA Porter Creek North, CM