Clinton Francis LaForge, “Iikkaashish-Stakes” passed away at age 71 on July 7, 2019 at Sioux Falls, South Dakota. He was residing in Rosebud, South Dakota.. He was born to Frank and Alice Mae (Whiteclay) LaForge on April 7, 1948. Clinton was a believer of the Creator and dedicated his life to his spirituality and family. He was a direct descendant of Chief Pretty Eagle and was a member of the Ties the Bundle clan and a child of the Greasy Mouth. He attended Crow Agency Public School and graduated from Flandreau Indian School in Pierre, South Dakota in 1969. He attended Miles City Community College after graduating from high school. Clinton served in the U.S. Army from June 1970 to January 1972 and received an honorable discharge. He worked at the Westmoreland Coal Mine for 27 years and later retired.
In Clinton’s youth, he loved to go hunting with his father and brothers. He loved the Big Horn Mountains. He enjoyed dancing in powwow’s up until after he had left the service. Competing in rodeos was his passion. Clinton participated in the high school rodeo arena and made it to the state finals in 1965. His last ride was at Parshall, North Dakota in 1976. He enjoyed telling tales of his days on the rodeo circuit. He was a competitive runner and made it to state finals all four years of high school. Clinton devoted his time to his children, his family members and friends.
In 2007, he moved to Rosebud, South Dakota where he made his home with his wife Elizabeth. He became very close to her family and friends. He was very respectful of the ways of the Sioux Tribe. When he came home to Montana, the made special effort to visit his family and friends. Clinton made it a practice to phone his family and friends on a daily basis. He traveled to see his children no matter the distances. He was very proud of his daughters, sons, nieces, nephews and grandchildren and their many accomplishments.
Clinton’s faith was strong and he respected all faiths. He followed traditional religion and participated in Peyote meetings for family and friends he helped with Sundances. Clinton’s knowledge of his spirituality and traditional values were deeply rooted; therefore he was honored to be asked and able to give Indian names.
Clinton leaves behind his companion Elizabeth Little Elk; his daughters Summer (Chad) Gardner, Alvina Laforge, Sherae Alexander, Alicia Hill all of Crawfordsville, Indiana, Sharmayne, Veronica and Mary Laforge, all of Polson, Montana; his sons Wizipan (Madonna) Little Elk of Mission, South Dakota, Jess Half Jr. of Crow Agency, Montana, Chad Sully of Rosebud, South Dakota, Vernon, Tony Torralba, Johnny Small and Josh Gust. He also raised his grandson Pejuta Little Elk of Rosebud, South Dakota; his adopted daughters Angie Spint and Amanda Browning; his grandchildren Victoria, Angeleigh, Dione, Anthony, Silas, A’lisha, Aiden, SherryLou, Elijah, Kolleen, Myrtle, Azleigha, Madison, Mason, Hayden, Rylynn, Chasen, Keya, Tokala and Wase; his great-grandchildren Harleyquinn and Arabella Whiteman; his aunts Veronica and Rebecca Whiteclay; his sisters Joyce, Sherry, Mary Laforge, Debbie (Mike) Gust, Francine (John) Small and Luvenia (Gary) Rides the Horse; his brothers Hugo and Tyrone Whiteclay, Billie Lincoln, Willie Brown, Tim McCleary, Victor Herford, Wayne LaForge, John Cummins Sr., Clay Dawes Marlon, Elmer, Jr., and Thomas Yarlott. His extended family including the Pretty Eagle descendants, Whiteclay, Stewart, Morrison, Bull Chief, White, Old Crow, White Fox, Bradley, Short Man, Stiff Arm, Cauliflower, Horse Capture and Fox families.
Clinton is preceded in death by his parents Frank and Alice Mae LaForge, his sister Dorothy Big Lake-Hair; his niece Cheryl Hair- Salazar; his daughter Tate Little Elk; his grandchildren Jax Gust, Kandin Small and the two little blessings that the Lord took home that are now with their papa.
Our family is large, if we have missed you, please accept our apology in our time of grief.
Funeral Mass will be celebrated Friday July 12th at 10:00 at the Spirit of Life Foursquare Church. Interment to follow at the Hardin Fairview Cemetery with military honors. Rosary will be said at 3:00 pm Thursday July 11th at the Bullis Funeral Chapel. The wake will be held Thursday July 11that the Multi Purpose Building in Crow Agency at 6:00 pm. Bullis Mortuary is entrusted with the arrangements.