Running Water is a lifelong resident of Santa Rosa County. He is the son of Raymond C. “Pic” Tolbert and Bobbie “Alonee” Bray Tolbert. His Creek heritage comes through both parents. He grew up listening to his mothers stories of their Creek grandmother, Drucilla Butler of the Wind Clan, who was taken to Oklahoma in the Trail of Tears, losing her husband and 2 children along the way. Since joining the tribe, it was discovered that his paternal great, great grandmother, Mary Balkum, was also full blood Creek.
At the age of 13, along the banks of East Bay, Running Water found his first piece of Native American Pottery. This instilled in him a desire to learn of his heritage and to preserve the history of his people through the collection of artifacts.
Today, Running Water plays the Native American flute, sets up displays of artifacts, and imparts his enthusiasm and love of his heritage through presentations at schools, festivals and wherever he is invited.