Anna “Kawennison” Thompson, 108, Akwesasne
Wednesday, December 29, 2010 - 8:40 pm

Mrs. Anna “Kawennison” Thompson, 108, of 470 Island Road, peacefully passed away on Wednesday morning, December 29, 2010 at her home under the care of her loving family and Akwesasne Home Care. She had been in failing health since June.

Anna was born February 26, 1902 on Cornwall Island the daughter of the late Thomas and Mary Terrance Peters. She attended schools on Cornwall Island. She married Tobias Thompson in September 1925 at St. Regis Catholic Church. He predeceased her on October 21, 1981.

Kawennison was the oldest Mohawk Native and one of the oldest Canadians. Throughout her life she worked various jobs. She picked spinach for 5 cents an hour in Malone, worked at Alcoa for brief time, and took care of recuperating soldiers from World War I in Saranac Lake. She also sold baskets in the Thousand Island Region of the St. Lawrence River, recruiting her children to row the boat from island and island, operated a store and pool hall on Cornwall Island and worked on the farm with her husband. But mainly she was a homemaker, a mother to her five children and “Tota” to her many grandchildren.

In addition to her family, she opened her home up to many to live. She was a devout communicant of the St. Regis Catholic Church, a member of the Rosarian Society and the Homemaker’s. She traveled to Rome to during the 80’s to see Pope John Paul II, enjoyed watching wrestling and hockey. She enjoyed crocheting, knitting, quilting, making sweet grass bookmarks, and on occasion a few baskets. Anna loved to talk about the “old days” with her friends and family, playing Radio Bingo, and visiting with her grandchildren. One of her many attributes, may be her great sense of humor, and her ability to kid around, tease and joke.

Anna is survived by two daughters, Eleanor Thompson and Inez Seymour, both of Akwesasne; a son and daughter-in-law, Raymond and Karen Thompson of Massena; 16 grandchildren, Thomas E. Thomas, Lynn, Kurt, Karl, and Kent Fetter, Fay and Julian Thompson, Rae and Jerry Seymour, Holly Pyke, Leisha Connor-Bauer, Debbie and Tammy Francis, Gregg Seamen, Erin McKeever, and Alexis Thompson; a chosen grandson, Billy Francis; 32 great grandchildren, 20 great, great grandchildren, and six great, great, great grandchildren; two brothers, Ralph and Jack Leaf both of Akwesasne; and many nieces and nephews.

Anna was predeceased by her son, Leonard Thompson on March 17, 1963; a daughter, Gladys Fetter on November 21, 2007; two grandchildren, Janet VanBuskirk and Ronnie Woods; a great, great granddaughter, Brooke Tromblay; and her siblings, Mary Ann, Margaret and Alexander Peters, Peter White, Elizabeth “Lizzie” LaFrance, Sarah Thompson, Genevieve Tarbell, Agnes Roundpoint, and Emily White.

Friends may call at the Tri-District Elders Center, Island Road, Akwesasne, Ontario, beginning 5:00 p.m. Saturday until 9:30 a.m., Monday. A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated Monday 11:00 a.m. at St. Regis Catholic Church with Rev. George H. Belgarde, SJ, celebrating. Burial will be in St. Lawrence Cemetery in the spring. Arrangements are with the Donaldson Funeral Home, Massena.

Memorial Contributions may be made to the Tri-District Elders Center.

Condolences may be made online at