Ernestine Walkingstick Cherokee Public Health Nurse
Biography of Ernestine Walkingstick, RN, Community Volunteer, and Civic Leader
Like most registered nurses, Ernestine Walkingstick had worked in several capacities before settling into the position of the Director of Community Health Nursing for the Cherokee Indian Reservation. She was an ideal community health nurse. She knew the reservation well – she knew the families from the babies to the elderly. She was instrumental in establishing and assisting in the clinic for the Indian population in the Robbinsville area. She also initiated, coordinated and operated the eye clinics and ENT clinics at the Cherokee Indian Hospital. She was a “nurse” in the purest sense – dedicated to the health and welfare of “her people. Her volunteer activities were legendary. She raised countless dollars for the Cherokee Children’s Home and was an active member of the North American Indian Women’s Association, Eastern Band of Cherokee Community Foundation, Western North Carolina Community Development and the Qualla SAFE House
Her obituary in the July 14, 1999 Asheville Citizen Times:
CHEROKEE - Ernestine S. Walkingstick , 62, of the Painttown community, died Sunday, July 11, 1999, at Memorial Mission Hospital. Native and lifelong resident of Swain and Jackson Counties, she was a daughter of the late William and Nancy Ledford Walkingstick . She retired after 35 years of service as a registered nurse in Swain County. She was a member of District Nurses Association, N.C. Nurses Association and American NursesAssociation. She was also a member of the following: Health Advisory Committee for Head Start Tribal Health board member Tribal Grand Council Committee district officer of Western District Homemakers "Woman of the Year" Community Development for N.C. Cooperative Extension Area Painttown Community club officer chairman of woman's division for Fall Festival officer of Reservation American Red Cross Chapter coordinator of the local blood drive officer of Reservation Cancer Society Chapter president of Native American Indian Women Association Local Chapter secretary and vice president of the Cherokee Lions Club board chairman of Cherokee Center for Family Services Cherokee Children's Home Development Committee and founding mother of agency for Swain/Qualla Safe, Inc., original task force that formed and served on that board of directors for five years.
"Ernestine Walkingstick: Community volunteer and civic leader 1937-1999" (Summer/Fall 1999). Cherokee Voice: The newsletter of the Cherokee Center for Family Services.
Photograph of billboard about the Ernestine Walkingstick Domestic Violence Shelter.