Tribe Plans Parade to Celebrate Chief’s 100th Birthday

Mashpee Wampanoag Chief Silent Drum, a World War II veteran, will turn 100 years old on Thursday, June 16. To celebrate this milestone, tribal members and friends will parade to his home on Meetinghouse Road in Mashpee, where a group of traditional drummers will perform an honor song.

Tribal members will gather at the Mashpee Wampanoag tribal housing at the traffic circle on Alice May Lopez Drive at 11:00 am and proceed to the chief’s home at 108 Meetinghouse Road to arrive at 11:30.

Vernon “Silent Drum” Lopez was born on June 16, 1922, at his family home in Mashpee, attended Mashpee and Falmouth schools. An Army veteran of WW II he was in the fifth wave of soldiers to land on Omaha Beach in Normandy to defend the allies. He worked for many years Avon Cut and Die and then the State Fish Hatchery in Sandwich where he worked for 10 years until retiring at the age of 70.

In 1998 Silent Drum was raised as chief after the passing of Chief Vernon “Sly Fox” Pocknett.

The chief will greet the parade from his driveway where tribal members will present a gift and share cake and stories.

For more information contact SmokeSygnals Content Director Paula Peters at 508-965-5140, or