PBS POV Screening of Sun Kissed
7:00 PM to 8:30 PM
In conjunction with the travling exhibit Native Voices: Native Peoples' Concepts of Health and Illness, the Alpena County George N. Fletcher Public Library will be presenting a free screening of the PBS POV documentary Sun Kissed.
After losing their son to XP, a rare and fatal genetic disease that causes skin cancer from any exposure to sunlight, Dorey and Yolanda Nez faced the devastating reality that their daughter, Leanndra, was also afflicted with XP. Dorey shouldered the enormous burden of caring for his daughter, while Yolanda, in her work as an advocate for Native Americans with disabilities, encountered other Navajos who knew of children with the same disease. Following these leads, the couple made the astonishing discovery that while XP shows up at a rate of one in one million in the general U.S. population, on the Navajo reservation, which crosses three states, including New Mexico, where the Nez family lives, the rate is one in 30,000.
What could account for such a tragic discrepancy? Maya Stark and Adi Lavy’s Sun Kissed is the candid and moving story of Dorey and Yolanda’s struggle to understand their children’s fate, an unexpected journey that forces them to confront their feelings of guilt and the tribal lore that reinforces it, and ultimately leads them to the shocking truth. Their children and other Navajo children are still paying the price for the American conquest of their tribe in the 1860s, a brutal campaign culminating in an almost-forgotten episode in American history — the Navajo Long Walk of 1864.
Alice Wolf Conference Room at the Alpena County George N. Fletcher Public Library.