ROW’s Tsista Kennedy is on his way

Submitted by the Region of Waterloo Swim Club

Kristian, or Tehatsistahawi (Day-haw-gee-staw-haw-wi/He is carrying the fire), Kennedy is a member of Beausoleil First Nation and is Ojibway and Oneida. Also known as Tsista, he is an avid swimmer and was selected to participate with the 2014 Swim Ontario Team at the North American Indigenous Games.

Tsista has spent five years and many hours training at the Wilfrid Laurier University Pool with the Region of Waterloo (ROW) Swim Club. He has years of competitive experience ranging from local and regional swim meets and continually strives to break his personal best times.

Tsista has been swimming since before he could walk and, although he was born and raised in the K-W area, he calls Christian Island (Beausoleil First Nation) home. Surrounded by Georgian Bay, while visiting home he developed a great respect and love for the water. He possesses a characteristic of his grandmother’s clan (the otter clan) — he glides through the water with poise. The pool and swimming are his passions and have been passed down from generations before him.

Tsista is a proud ROW swimmer. He has always trained hard with the goal of being selected to the Aboriginal Team Ontario at the 2014 North American Indigenous Games and represent his ancestors, his people, and the coming generations. Tsista is also an active youth within the First Nation community in Kitchener-Waterloo. He shares in the pride, unity, strength and vision as Anishnaabe. He also strives to be a role model for his younger siblings, cousins, fellow swimmers and community members.

We at ROW are proud of Tsista (Kristian), not only for his selection to compete at the North American Indigenous Games, but also for the two gold and five silver medals he won while there. Well done!

More information

Aboriginal Team Ontario is comprised of the top 24 indigenous swimmers from Ontario including First Nations and Métis swimmers. The North American Indigenous Games were held in Regina at the end of July and featured over 3,600 athletes under 19 years of age.

For more about Team Ontario, read the Northern Life article

For more on the games visit and the Region of Waterloo Swim Club at