Award-winning Cree author Larry Loyie was determined to inform the world about Indigenous history, culture, and traditions through his writing. He went back to school in his mid-fifties to study grammar and learn to type in order to fulfill a childhood dream of becoming a writer. His plays, children’s books, and national history, Residential Schools, With the Words and Images of Survivors, confirmed his important legacy of “books by us, and about us.” Larry Loyie was a mentor to many, and always generous with his encouragement of others. He passed away on April 18, 2016 at the age of 82 years.
Constance Brissenden was Larry Loyie’s partner, co-author, and editor for 24 years. They met in a free creative writing class in 1993, and soon launched Living Traditions Writers Group to encourage writing in Indigenous communities. The couple were committed to education, and gave more than 1,600 talks and writing workshops together. A prolific author and editor, Constance continues to share Larry’s legacy by encouraging emerging writers, and by assisting with book projects in Indigenous communities.