One of B.C.'s most influential and respected aboriginal leaders, Grand Chief Stewart Phillip, is recovering in Penticton Regional Hospital after his Chevrolet Tahoe crashed into a rock and overturned onto its roof.
According to a statement issued by the Union of B.C. Indian Chiefs, Phillip's vehicle "slid on black ice and snow" along Highway 3 about 24 kilometres from Hope.
He has non-life-threatening injuries.
Phillip, his wife Joan, and their family expressed deep appreciation in the statement to those who stopped, offered first aid, and steered traffic by the accident site until the RCMP and B.C. Ambulance officials arrived.
The family also extended its gratitude to the first responders as well as nurses and doctors at Fraser Canyon Hospital.
He has since been transferred to Penticton Regional Hospital.
Phillip, a charismatic chief, has made great efforts to build bridges between the Union of B.C. Indian Chiefs and social movements and activist groups across the province.
He is one of the most articulate critics of proposed pipelines that would ship bitumen from the Alberta tarsands to the B.C. coast for export to Asia.
In addition, Phillip has been at the forefront of efforts to bring about justice for missing and murdered aboriginal women.