‘It Was His Dream’: Proud Aboriginal Travels 2,000 Miles From Remote Island To Surprise Granddaughter

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Grandparents are an absolute gift! It has been 5 years since I last had a living grandparent, but my memories are more than enough to remind me how involved they were in my life.

When I was younger, every summer morning my grandfather and I would go for a walk to the shop and get strawberry milkshakes. Now that I think about it, we actually never really spoke a word during those trips. We would just hold hands and enjoy the time we had together. It was our tradition.

My quality time with my grandmother was a lot different from my time with my grandfather, but it was just as significant in its own way. Our different relationships and traditions are what made having them in life so remarkable.

One college graduate got to commemorate her important day with a pleasant visit and practice from her grandfather.

According to Sunny Skyz, Gali Yalkarriwuy Gurruwiwi is an Aboriginal elder who journeyed 2,000 miles from a distant island located in north-east Arnhem Land to Healesville, Australia, all for a dance with his granddaughter.

Sasha had been living in Healesville for two and a half years where she attended school at Worawa Aboriginal College.

“It was his dream to dance with his granddaughters here,” Gali’s English-speaking wife, Jane Garrutju, expressed to Australian Broadcasting Corp.

Gali is a leader of Yolngu Mala and is known as the Morning Star dancer of his tribe.

“When visitors come to Elcho Island my grandfather always dances, and all the grandchildren dance with him,” Sasha said. “I always love to dance with my grandparents. This was a bit unique.”

The family allowed Sasha to be a part of Worawa because they wanted her to have an opportunity to be anything that she wanted to be. It puts a huge smile on my face to hear about the sacrifice of her relatives and the lengths this grandfather traveled just to share this unforgettable moment with his granddaughters.

Sasha’s appreciation and acceptance of her family’s culture and traditions are beyond admirable, as she “walks proudly in both worlds.”

“[Gali’s] very strong in teaching his grandchildren to cling on to their values, to be able to balance Western culture and our culture,” Jane explained.

Grandparents are so special, no matter what color, culture, continent, or creed. Gali’s love for his granddaughter is evident, and I’m honored that I got to hear about it. I’m so happy that Sasha got to experience this dance that I am sure she will never forget!