Mankiller released from hospital after scare

by Jeffrey Giuffrida | 7/25/96 5:00am

Wilma Mankiller, Dartmouth's Montgomery Fellow Winter term, was discharged from a Boston Hospital Tuesday after receiving treatment for a transplanted kidney her body rejected.

Mankiller, the first woman elected chief of the Cherokee Nation, left the College in February, after she was diagnosed with lymphoma cancer in her colon and nearby lymph nodes.

According to The Associated Press, Mankiller had been taking anti-rejection medication since her 1990 kidney transplant, but was forced to stop taking it after undergoing chemotherapy treatment for her cancer.

Signs of kidney rejection forced Mankiller to return to the hospital last week.

College President James Freedman, who was diagnosed with lymphoma in April 1994, said he spoke with Mankiller by phone Friday and was impressed by her positive attitude.

"She's really full of courage, good humor and the determination to beat this," he said. "We always talk about the fact of what we've been through. I haven't been giving her advice, but you do tell her to keep her spirits up."

In May Mankiller attended the Dartmouth Pow-Wow, a celebration of Native American culture, Freedman said. He said she hopes to be able to spend more time at the College when her health improves.

"She just loves Dartmouth," he said. "We'd certainly like to have her back. We'd love to have her back as a Montgomery fellow."

Officials from Deaconess Hospital declined to comment on Mankiller's status, citing patient-physician confidentiality. Mankiller was unavailable for comment.