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Isaiah Washington Appointed Chief Of Sierra Leone Tribe

5/3/2011 3:34pm EDT

Isaiah WashingtonActor Isaiah Washington has been appointed chief of a Sierra Leone tribe, after embarking on a quest to discover his roots.

The actor, who penned a memoir called A Man From Another Land, reveals his search to learn more about his family history led him to fulfill an ancient prophecy.

During an appearance on breakfast show Today on Tuesday, Washington revealed, "I did a DNA test back in 2005... After about eight months of research I decided, 'What am I going to do with this information?' I put a delegation together. I had an architect and a surgeon come, thinking I was going to go into (Sierra Leone to) help."

"(But) apparently I was fulfilling a folklore in this particular tribe. And as I was being inducted as a chief she (his chief mother) whispered into my ear and said, 'You're a man from another land.'"

And although the former Grey's Anatomy star was grateful for the bestowed honor, Washington, now the leader of nearly 6,000 villagers has a long journey ahead of him.

He adds, "(I was) thinking I was going to get in (to Sierra Leone) and maybe just have the African experience and come back and donate some basketballs and build some things. But no, the folklore states that I would be a man from another land and I would help bring the country back to its original state."

Isaiah Washington

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