The 72-year-old Means, who was diagnosed with inoperable throat cancer last year, died early Monday (Oct. 22) at his ranch in Porcupine, S.D., the AP reports.
Means was an early leader of the American Indian Movement, founded in the late 1960s to redress the U.S. government’s treatment of Native Americans. He was part of the group’s occupation of the Bureau of Indian Affairs offices in Washington in 1972 and a 71-day standoff with government officials at Wounded Knee, S.D., the following year. He was tried for his involvement in the Wounded Knee siege, but the case was eventually thrown out.
He also ran for the presidential nomination of the Libertarian Party in 1988, finishing second to Ron Paul.
Means also became an actor later in his life, starting with the role of Chingachgook in Michael Mann‘s “The Last of the Mohicans.” His other credits include voice work on Disney’s “Pocahontas,” the TNT miniseries “Into the West” and a number of TV guest spots ranging from “Nash Bridges” to “Curb Your Enthusiasm.”