|Ookanak was born by Ennadai Lake located several hundred miles inland, west of Hudson Bay. She had more than ten siblings but knows well only her brother, Charlie Atkak. During the summer her family remained by Ennadai Lake but moved to various camps in the winter. Although the family would sometimes travel alone often several families would make the trek together.
Eva married Job, a well respected, resourceful, hunter. During the winter of 1957 while they and several other families were camping by Henik Lake a government plane landed. A bulldozer leveled their camp including tents and belongings and told the families to get on the plane where they were taken to Arviat. Several Inuit had recently died of starvation and it was determined by the authorities the Ennadai would have a better chance of survival if relocated to the coast. This action generated ill feelings amongst the Ennadai towards the Government that are present to this day.
Eva’s mother, Attaluk, taught her many things but could not totally prepare Eva for life in Arviat. Living by the sea she learned new skills such as how to skin seal. Job’s health does not allow him to walk so Eva pilots the ATV with Job on the back when the couple go hunting for caribou. They enjoy the land immensely and are often hunting during the spring and summer. Eva is a small, energetic woman with an engaging smile and optimistic nature. Having visited her home several times she and her family are a pleasure to spend time with.
Eva Ookanak Mukjunik