This memorial website was created in honor and celebration of our beloved Naqual, Soke, husband, son, brother, father, and friend, Harley SwiftDeer Reagan.

SwiftDeer, also known as Gunnie to many, touched many lives, in many arenas, around the world.

We invite all who have known and loved him to contribute stories, photos, videos, and/or audio to this site.  (Note that we are also developing a memory book, and would like to be able to use contributions to this site in that as well.) 

On Tuesday, October 8, 2013, over 160 friends and family gathered in Phoenix from around the country (and world) to celebrate the life of Harley SwiftDeer Reagan. The stories shared were rich, and both tears and laughs were plentiful. In the end we said our heartfelt goodbyes and remembered a brilliant, courageous and tenacious man. The memorial included the US Marine Corps honor guard presentation of Military Funeral Honors with gun salute, bugler playing “Taps,” and American flag folding and presentation to his wife, Dianne, to honor SwiftDeer as a soldier, veteran, and warrior.

About Harley SwiftDeer Gunnie Reagan 

Born and raised in Texas, SwiftDeer often referred to himself as a half-breed cowboy. And though true, that was only a small part of the truth.

Anyone who has been in the dojo with SwiftDeer can attest to his skill in martial arts. He brought an intensity of focus, attention to detail, and knowledge of what really matters in technique and situations.

He delighted in the competitiveness of the shooting world. The Deer Tribe Gun Club, which he founded, has been running monthly Steel Challenge matches for at least 13 years. He said this about his experience: "… The stress of being the Chief Range Master/Match Sponsor & also shoot your own match! ( I LOVE IT!)". In the world of Cowboy Action Shooting he was known as "Ol’ Swift Buck.”

He has touched the lives of many, many people around the world with the teachings he brought through the Twisted Hairs Council of Elders: the wheels, keys, and ceremonies of the Sweet Medicine SunDance Path.

He was also a beloved husband, father, son, godfather, friend.

Though we will miss you more than words can say, we are at the same time full of gratitude for the time we had with you, and we send our prayers for your transition to - whatever is next for you!


Posted by Robin Swan on September 10, 2020
Thank you Uncle for all the time you gave me on the MAT ~ Everyday in all ways I see the beauty you shared enveloping me. Wado
Posted by Deborah Gillingham on March 6, 2020
Met you, Swiftdeer, in Hamalayan foothills and you protected me from selfish bitches. Forever grateful. Thank you and wish you peace.
Posted by Richard Bird on September 11, 2018
The desire I have to learn found it's way to your commitment to teach. Such
good fortune that my determination was able to catch up to you in time.
  I am changed. I am grateful.
  The memory within this lifetime seems not so dependable. When I have been dead for some time and these ideas are lost to almost everyone here on this sacred earth - I know that I will be living on with what I learned by my time with you.
  Bless you brother for you gifts.
Posted by kickingdeer lee on March 20, 2014
rip my sensai soke swift deer
Posted by devora moving waters on December 16, 2013
i have learned and continue to learn and unlearn so much with you chief swiftdear and these teachings you have so graciously given us over so many many years . my heart reaches out to all the tribe. in the way of beauty i (we) will continue on this path with you and the rest of the tribe thru the dreamtime with so much gratitude appreciation Love .
may peace be with all . aho !
Posted by Alanna Tarkington on November 29, 2013
You taught me to, "JUMP INTO THE CHANGE" which I have followed all my life. May you ...  JUMP INTO THE CHANGE....with energy and with power! Your Apprentice, Alanna
Posted by Richard Bird on November 25, 2013
I learned from you the beauty of a question.
You set me to finding my own best question.
I await your next challenge with joy and respect.
May the wave of Thunder Strikes carry your dreaming far.
Posted by john speirs on November 5, 2013
Thanks to you; I find myself; in the sweat-lodge; on the mat.
Deepest gratitude.
Posted by Arnd Dumont on November 4, 2013
Thanx 4 all !
                       ...see ya !
Posted by Shirlee Jack on November 2, 2013
Sacredness, Transformation, Evolution, etc. - the Library-Tapestry of teachings and tools you shared keeps changing many lives on many levels. Godspeed, Swiftdeer!
Posted by Bethany Curtiss on October 30, 2013
So how's it going in those other Worlds with human life? This one is richer for your having been here. Blessed Be!
Posted by Eva Ladyhawk Wright on October 19, 2013
Dear SwiftDeer,
Thank you for the contributions you have made to this world. You will be deeply missed by all. You are now free to fly. We'll see you from now on in our journey-work. Sacred Hawk Blessings upon you.
Posted by Boris Lessenich on October 16, 2013
July 1994 in France, one week with Swift Deer on the Mayan Book of Life. Swift Deer was Talking about the Cards, I think it was the 4-Card, the Patriarch when, all of a sudden, he got up and demonstrated a karate kata. He wanted us to focus on some detail. Swift Deers physical presence and the vastness of the space he opened made a deep impact to my life.
Posted by Karen Krauss on October 11, 2013
Swiftdeer, Thank you for being you and showing me the path to myself - thank you for helping me to navigate this wild - wonderful and crazy world with an anchor to nature ..... words don't express my love and appreciation - I consider myself blessed to have found you and to have been your student and comrade on this amazing journey. You are loved always Lighting Spirit
Posted by Benjamin Morlok on October 11, 2013
I bow to you, Swift Deer, and thank you for so much beauty and strength you have helped me establish in my life.
with deep gratitude Benjamin
Posted by Alexander Ertlschweiger on October 10, 2013
Dear T.S
I miss my dream teacher, my firechild are very sad and deeply mourning.I want to thank you publicly for all you did for me and my environment.My Heyoka child are breaking up as I write this, he must be provide chocolate as the teacher said. Even though I never met the TS in the physical my heart goes out to the family and his friends.

Hoka hey T.S may your journey be great.
Posted by Franziska Weber on October 9, 2013
There are no words for my gratitude. That I have the possibility to walk this path, to learn on this path is not only the most precious thing in my life, it goes far far beyond this. I'm back, re-connected, through time and space. Thank you, SwiftDeer.
Posted by Malou Eberspächer on October 7, 2013
I remember you smoking the yellow blinking cigarette , having the pistol beside you , phoning with your mother same time you were downloading great teachings for the APA-Training. I liked your Humor and your wide awakeness and the book of lide readings. I am thankful to have been in your last Q4. Thank you for all.
Posted by Malou Eberspächer on October 7, 2013
Swift Deer, you dance in my consciousness and in my heart. It was great, that I was attracted to you and your wisdom. 23 years ago I met you the first time and since this time I am learning from you. You were one of my most important teachers and the most challenging…one. I remember the first black lodge you gave in Switzerland and many other teachings in Europe. Then I had to come to you.
Posted by Brian Obrecht on October 7, 2013
Meeting you in your Pasadena garage (1986) changed me forever. I either had to forget what you showed me that weekend or find out how it was possible. I choose the “Red Pill”, the Red Road, and you. I will never forget your gentle way under the gruff exterior, your wisdom or your advice. I wish you a smooth transition and a powerful rebirth. Looking forward to the next time around.
Posted by christine holméN on October 7, 2013
2002 was the most touching travel to mexico with swift deer for me. we where travelling with jeeps to diffrent maya buildings and cenotes. it was the time of time cell activation and the teachings of it. this 13 days changed my life deeply. and i understood that time is soo relativ, even though we are living in duality...thank u sincerely yellow self existing sun
Posted by Eva Nyström on October 6, 2013
Dear SwiftDeer, your teachings and your presence have been a touch of beauty and joy in my life!
Posted by Cathy Kelly on October 5, 2013
Thank you my friend for enticing me to California, I owe you one.
I have no regrets about knowing you. 
Till we meet again.
Posted by Ismene Jäger on October 5, 2013
A fawn flowered out of the piece of clay, just like it had lived in there since ever and only waited to be born. In 1993 after a deep teaching time, when I made a giveaway for this extraordinary teacher SWIFT DEER. Since that time I felt interconnected with him. In deep gratitude, respect and love - I thank you SWIFT DEER for providing so much knowledge and ceremonial encouragement.
Posted by Katarina Ödman on October 5, 2013
You nourish the fire
deep within the monument
of being
where stillness abides
and death is freeing.

You bide your time
while we frolic in the chaos
waiting patiently for your time
to remind us of what we are.

When all is done
body lies still
mind lies quiet
You find us there
in the ashes
shivering like
newborn petals
yearning for

- Christine Fortuin
Posted by Kathy Milazzo on October 4, 2013
Swift Deer was a great man. He is an inspiration because he lived life as a human being achieving greatness through work and determination. In this way he is an example to me and the key message is that such greatness is my potential and the potential of every human, who is willing to do the work, assume authority, take responsibility and stand accountable. Go for the Light! Best Love K.
Posted by Sylke Borchmann on October 4, 2013
Dearmoring in his Office in 2005 was like this: Nothing you could do could make me untrue to you guy (he echoed: Myself/MyPipe/ThisPath). Nothing you could buy can make me tell a lie to this guy (Myself/MyPipe,ThisPath). I gave this guy my word of honor to be faithfull and Im gonna. You best be believing I wont be deceiving this guy ..Myself...My choice -! Thank you SwiftDeer !
Posted by Jean Rankin on October 4, 2013
Thankyou SwiftDeer! I first met you in 1993 and I was in pretty bad shape. You told me to "get busy, stay busy, make a thing of beauty, give it away, and grow up!" Your wisdom has continued to feed me and I have enough to last the rest of this life. Thank you for the gift of the lineage and thank you for being 100% pure YOU !
Posted by Brigitte Kimmerle on October 3, 2013
SwiftDeer – you will dance in my heart forever! You touched me with your power stories and even more with your honesty when you failed. You touched me most deeply with your benevolent grandfather space, in which I was able to see my inner truth and change my life. Thank you!
Posted by Sabina Tschudi on October 3, 2013
Thank you SwiftDeer for Everything! I met you in 1983 in Switzerland, and came to your workshop in Interlaken with my Sister Sibylle. My sister came to one of your workshops in Walenstadtberg through our cousin Cathrine, a wild-cat dompteuse in the French National Circus in Paris. We have a family-womans lineage of working and learning with you. In gratitude for all of us, Yours,Sabina
Posted by jake kerr on October 3, 2013
howdy swift--what's all this transition stuff? i still see and talk ("see" and "talk") witcha.
namaste, mofo, and vaya con dios.
p.s.  what Christian said -- SpeaksForMe.
Posted by Annette Jäger on October 3, 2013
Thank you Grandfather for all your teachings and your wisdom. They chanced my life, my point of view, my behaviour and showed me how i can live my shining. I met you "only" on facebook. But with every contact you touched my heard with your knowledge, wisdom and humor. I am deep grateful. All this will live in my heart forever. Thank you!
Posted by Roman Jörg on October 3, 2013
Dear Swift,
I never met you physically. Anyhow you touched my life in the dream, with your teachings, and when i saw the deer passing my way in the week before you left. My heart is with You!
Posted by Misha Rogg on October 3, 2013
September 15th, 2013         To Swiftdeer, WADO
'Today's a good day to die ...'
May your wishes come true strong,
May your journeys take you home,
and may you stay ... FOREVER YOUNG ! Until we meet again !
Posted by petra lamp on October 3, 2013
I remember the APA workshop, my first workshop with Swift Deer, he sat down on his chair, put the golden pistol to his right, than the shim mering blue on to his left, took a "sergant pepper", and than asked: "please tell me, what you need, that I can help you, learn to glean..." Thank you, so much for your benevolance and support...
Posted by Jana Roetzsch on October 3, 2013
Als ich dir zum ersten Mal 2009 in Costa Rica begegnete, und sagte: "Ich bin hier, weil ich endlich SwiftDeer kennenlernen wollte" war deine Antwort:
"Remember, its not me, its the lineage" Am Morgen des 11.September 2013 gab es hier einen kraftvollen Regenbogen. Danke das ich Teil dieser Linie bin, und dadurch auf eine schwierige Lebenssituation gut vorbereitet war In Dankbarkeit
Posted by gabe wolf on October 3, 2013
You told me to never believe a word you said, and I never did! I pray you are Dancing in the Kivas and happy! Aho!
Posted by Leia WhiteFire Woman on October 3, 2013
I have come to know Swiftdeer only through his many contributions and teachings. Because of his many contributions, I have had an opportunity to heal a chronic illness and have become a very different human being. Thank you, Swiftdeer for your wisdom and courage. You will be missed!
Posted by Quinn Yarbrough on October 3, 2013
For leading me with a smile to the door of death and encouraging me to walk through to the other side of my fear, for waking me to this dream of myself at choice, for honing my sight to recognize the symbols and signs of my own reflection in the world, for inspiring me to accept the dance of light and dark and to dream with conscious intent. For the best times you brought forth. Thank You
Posted by Petra Kral-Leonhard on October 3, 2013
Thank you Swift Deer for all your gifts you gave to me!
I first met you in 2006, together with my little doughter Teresa - I was feeling at home to be with you and the bigger familie on the sundanceland.This connection will live forever.Thank you for your warm voice, for seeing the universe in my eyes, for remembering me of my power and giving me trust.
Posted by Mary Vance on October 2, 2013
Thank You Grandfather. Thank you for your patience, your kindness, your presence. Thank you for your authenticity, for living with purpose and determination. Thank you for sharing your knowledge, for speaking truth and for preserving and living the sacred laws. Thank you for teaching me to Sun Dance. Thank you for your humor, your courage, your unbendable faith. Thank you for teaching me.
Posted by Frank Caldwell on October 2, 2013
I met Swiftdeer in 1986. I was told that his workshop would "change my life". Turns out he was the gift that keeps on giving. Brother, what a ride it was. Thanks for being on point and for the transformations that you have set in motion for all of Grandmother Earth. From one cowboy to another, thanks for being my friend. A-HO!!
Posted by Emanuela Caria on October 2, 2013
Caro SwiftDeer,
Il mio ego è molto dispiaciuto di non averti potuto conoscere di persona, mi sento comunque fortunata di averti potuto conoscere nello spirito. Per me sei un grande esempio e mi dai la forza di crescere, come se fossi il mio fertilizzante. Sento con angoscia che sei trapassato e sento anche con gioia che la tua forza è rimasta qui.
Posted by Christian Waelder on October 2, 2013
To Swiftdeer & Nightbird
There has not been a day where swift as not impacted my life
some might say I left the path but I say swift has showed me how to dance my life. to live your sacred dream it just rocks. and I am alway thankful for my time with swift deer and you night bird Love brings fire
Posted by Diana Kardia on September 26, 2013
Dear SwiftDeer. Thank you for teaching us how to recognize the dream, to be both within it and outside it so that the dream becomes a conscious choice. Thank you for guiding us to a larger space, a new terrain, a greater light. And thank you for showing us the folly and the power of every moment, and how to birth our shining from that balance. May these gifts speed you on your journey.

Leave a Tribute

Recent Tributes
Posted by Robin Swan on September 10, 2020
Thank you Uncle for all the time you gave me on the MAT ~ Everyday in all ways I see the beauty you shared enveloping me. Wado
Posted by Deborah Gillingham on March 6, 2020
Met you, Swiftdeer, in Hamalayan foothills and you protected me from selfish bitches. Forever grateful. Thank you and wish you peace.
Posted by Richard Bird on September 11, 2018
The desire I have to learn found it's way to your commitment to teach. Such
good fortune that my determination was able to catch up to you in time.
  I am changed. I am grateful.
  The memory within this lifetime seems not so dependable. When I have been dead for some time and these ideas are lost to almost everyone here on this sacred earth - I know that I will be living on with what I learned by my time with you.
  Bless you brother for you gifts.
Recent stories

I just found out of Harleys Passing

Shared by John Mullins on May 15, 2021
I studied the Teachings of the Sweet Medicine Sundancing path by Harley Swift Dear Decides ago and learned much about myself and what is possible in this reality. He was a true Great Teacher and an example of what we can achieve if we have the inner strength and the desire to go down the path to enlightenment.
My Condolences to his family, friends and fellow travelers

From Marcella

Shared by Centre for Shamanic Arts on October 18, 2013
Dear swiftdeer i have wrote this poem for you, When i was a child i dreamt of being a police women and solving crimes. When i was a child i fought the unknown to be shown and never understood :) When i was a child i thought love was grand because my parents loved me :) When i was a child school is now just a memory :) When i was a teenager i grew with the knife, crime and hatred When i was a teenager smoking and drinking made me estatic When i was a teenager i fell in love many times When i was a teenager i grew apart from my family When i was an adult i grew to appreciate my parents When i was an adult i knew how to fend for myself When i was an adult i met harley and the deertribe When i was an adult i fell in love again The only thing is i fell in love this time with god, with the light and now you are a living memory in my heart for ever, along with many other teachers that i have met, you have brought into my life great teachings that the inner child doesnt understand but the adult does, you brought into my life along with other great people an extension of my family, a futre, a hope and a dream to come true, you brought into my life love the love of the people of the land of the tribes which im strongly connected to , you brought my dream of visiting the homelands of America true, my sundance will live as a memory for ever and i thank you for that, i will continue to dance and remember who it was and what it was that finally got me to the place that i have always called home AMERICA i feel strongly now as i did then, swift that i thank you for. God rest your soul and your spirit be, always my friend , my teacher and see you as my Grandfather the man who would teach me to stand up for myself in life thank you SPRINGFLOWERWOMAN


Shared by Martin vanZyl on October 8, 2013


S is for his Shamanism of Water, Earth, Air and Fire

W is for the Warrior who inspired the desire

I is for his Intellect harnessing the So Below and the As Above

F is for his Fluidity of Movement and of love

T is for his Transforming of wants and needs

D is for the Determination of the Womb for the Seed

E is to exhibit his Shining and from within his Fire

E is for his Ecstasy in living his Heart’s Desire

R is to Retrace his Walk in Beauty on this Sacred Ground

As he continues his walk into the Great Round


                                                            --Martin “Wheelwalker”