Iconic Native American CPD officer killed in home invasion

CHICAGO (FOX 32 News) - Tragedy has struck a former Chicago police officer who was one of the department's first Native Americans.

He was killed in a home invasion in Phoenix, and now, his family is looking for answers.

The deadly home invasion is also puzzling Phoenix police officers.

The victim is Native American icon Jess Sixkiller. The 78-year-old was one of the first Native American Chicago police officers, and his family says he studied at Yale and fought for Native American civil rights his entire life.

"I mean this man was just a visionary, and that was my dad, that was our dad," said daughter Janell Sixkiller.

The grandfather and father of four lived in his West Phoenix home for 38 years. He was married to his wife for more than 50 years, who’s been battling cancer.

"He was up...she heard noise, voices, sounds. She yelled ‘talk to me, talk to me,’" Janell said.

Phoenix police say Sixkiller’s wife called 9-1-1, told them she heard someone yell police in broken English, then she heard gunshots. Police arrived and found her husband shot to death.

His life was spent fighting for his community, and his children say He died protecting his wife.

"They fought side by side to this blessed day... We were living with cancer and still battling it and these bullets took him, took an important part of this circle that will never be complete again," Janell said.

Sixkiller was Cherokee Indian. He was a well-known advocate for Native American rights.