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Jonathon Solomon; fought Ala. drilling

ANCHORAGE -- Jonathon Solomon, a Gwich'in tribal leader who for decades helped lead the fight to keep oil drilling out of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, died of kidney failure July 13 at Alaska Native Medical Center. He was 74.

Mr. Solomon was drawn into the political arena in the 1960s, when he fought a proposal to dam the Yukon River, a project that would have flooded 10 old Athabaskan villages.

His fight to keep drilling from the plains of ANWR and protect a caribou herd dates to the 1970s. He strongly believed that the future of the Gwich'in, a tribe of 8,000, depended on the welfare of the herd.

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