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128px-Padlock-olive.svg Water Tribe emblem
This article is about Katara and Sokka's mother. For Katara in the unaired pilot, see Kya (pilot). For Aang and Katara's daughter, see Kya (waterbender).
Biographical information

Southern Water Tribe


Water Tribe


94 AG

Physical description


Hair color


Personal information

Hakoda, Katara, Sokka, Kanna, Nini, Southern Water Tribe, more ...


Fire Nation, Yon Rha, Southern Raiders

Chronological and political information

Wife of the tribal chief


Southern Water Tribe

First appearance
Voiced by

Grey DeLisle

Kya was the mother of Sokka and Katara and the wife of Hakoda.[2] Her death during a raid on her home had a profound impact upon both her children. Katara wore her mother's necklace as a memento of her affection.


Life and adulthood

Legends state that, in her early years, Kya once had a childhood friend, Nini, who was trapped and subsequently killed by a snowstorm while the two were young. Katara told the story in order to scare her friends, making it unclear whether the events occurred or not.[3]

In her later life, Kya eventually married Hakoda and bore two children: Sokka and Katara. When her daughter, Katara, became ill with a cold, Kya made a special paste out of blubber and pepper berries and rubbed it on her little girl's chest, which was always effective.[4]


Kya, Yon Rha and young Katara
Yon Rha's confrontation of Kya was interrupted by eight-year-old Katara.
Lady LostrisAdded by Lady Lostris

When the Southern Raiders learned that one waterbender still remained in the Southern Water Tribe, they were charged by Fire Lord Azulon to find and dispose of the last remaining waterbender in the tribe. The Southern Raiders attacked Kya's village in an attempt to identify and kill the waterbender. The Raiders' leader, Yon Rha, found Kya in her house and began to interrogate her, demanding to know the identity of the last Southern waterbender.

The two were subsequently interrupted by eight-year-old Katara. As she looked the man in his eyes, Kya told Yon Rha to leave her alone and that she would give him the information he wanted if he let her daughter go. Katara was scared, but her mother told her not to worry and to go find her father. When Katara did not move, Yon Rha told her that she had heard her mother, and to leave. She left, and Yon Rha resumed his interrogation.

Yon Rha demanded to know the identity of the waterbender who lived in the village. Kya at first denied it, saying that there were no waterbenders left, as the Fire Nation had taken them all away in prior raids. However, Yon Rha contradicted her, saying that a reliable source had told him of the existence of one waterbender left in the Southern Water Tribe. He told her that they were not leaving until they had found the waterbender. Kya deliberately told Yon Rha that she was the last waterbender of the Southern Water Tribe, lying to protect both her daughter and village. She told Yon Rha that she was ready to be taken as their prisoner, but Yon Rha told her that he was not to take any prisoners. She was unable to be saved by the time her family arrived back at the home.


Kya's death had a severe effect on her whole family. Both Katara and Sokka developed a strong distrust in anybody from the Fire Nation, and Hakoda went off to war with his warriors in order to ensure the Water Tribe's survival following the War's end. Her death has had Katara expressing her grief on several occasions; Kya's death was often brought up when Katara talked about how ruthless the Fire Nation was throughout the War.[5]

Sokka and Katara's mother was mentioned on several occasions. While Katara was talking with Haru, she pointed out the necklace she was wearing. Haru complimented her by saying it was beautiful, to which Katara replied that she lost her mother in a Fire Nation raid and that necklace is all she has left of her. Haru stated that it was not enough, and Katara agreed.[6]

Kya hallucination
Katara had a vision of Kya in the Foggy Swamp.
Lady LostrisAdded by Lady Lostris

Katara also saw a vision of her mother during her adventure in the Foggy Swamp. However, what Katara thought was her mother she quickly realized was actually a tree stump sticking out of the water, transformed by the swamp's mystical properties. Katara promptly broke down into tears.[7]

When Zuko and Katara were imprisoned in Ba Sing Se, Katara expressed her hatred and grief toward Zuko by tearfully confiding that his nation killed her mother. He sympathized with her loss and explained that he had also lost his own mother, but that was not enough to stop him from joining Azula in conquering Ba Sing Se.[8]

Sokka admitted to Toph that he was unable to remember what his mother looked like. He said that Katara always seemed like the maternal figure in the family, and assumed the responsibilities left by Kya. He even went as far to say that whenever he tried to picture Kya, Katara's face was the only thing he could see.[9] Sokka held a grudge against the Fire Nation for the death of his mother, but that grudge slowly faded as he grew older. He later opposed the idea of his sister exacting revenge on the man who was responsible for Kya's death.

In an attempt to prove that he was indeed trustworthy, Zuko offered to help Katara find the man who had killed Kya, which he hoped would give Katara closure and justice. However, Katara also desired revenge. When she faced Yon Rha, she forced him to remember her face, and he finally did. He also revealed why he had murdered Kya: to kill the last Southern waterbender. Katara realized that her mother died saving her life, and she almost killed Yon Rha in a fit of rage. However, she ultimately relented when she saw how pathetic he was and decided to spare him. Although she would never forgive Yon Rha, she had the closure she needed to move on in life. She learned to trust Zuko and continues to value her mother's memory.[1]

After Team Avatar defeated both Azula and Phoenix King Ozai, Hakoda remarked that Kya would have been proud of Sokka and Katara. Katara shed a few happy tears at this statement, briefly touching her necklace.[10]


Katara and Aang later named their daughter after Kya.[11]


Kya was a caring, loving wife and mother, establishing a strong bond with her husband and both their children, notably Katara. An extremely courageous woman, she willingly sacrificed her life to save her daughter, revealing that she harbored deep maternal instincts and felt highly obligated to protect her family at any cost.




Avatar: The Last Airbender

Book Two: Earth (土)

Book Three: Fire (火)


  • In the unaired pilot for the original series, Katara's name was originally "Kya", but was changed once the actual show began production. This name was later used for her mother instead. This was because there was a video game character named Kya, and the creators changed the name to Katara to avoid a potential lawsuit.
  • Prior to her name's revelation, Kya was referred to by fans as "NMOKAS", the acronym for "Nameless Mother of Katara and Sokka".
  •'s Avatar Index and Avatar Extras use the spelling "Kaya", and also uses a Southern Raider's picture instead of Kya's when her name is clicked.
  • In Katara's vision of her in the swamp, Kya did not have the same hairstyle nor was she wearing her heavy coat. As such, she looked different to how she appeared in Katara's flashback.
  • Kya's name was only mentioned once by Hakoda, when Katara told him about the man in their house during the raid.[1]


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 Ehasz, Elizabeth Welch (writer) & Dos Santos, Joaquim (director). (July 17, 2008). "The Southern Raiders". Avatar: The Last Airbender. Season 3. Episode 16. Nickelodeon.
  2. From older Avatar: The Last Airbender official site, originally on (link). No longer updated.
  3. Hedrick, Tim (writer) & Dos Santos, Joaquim (director). (November 9, 2007). "The Puppetmaster". Avatar: The Last Airbender. Season 3. Episode 8. Nickelodeon.
  4. Wilgus, Alison (w), Garagarza, Elsa (a), Dzioba, Wes (col), Comicraft (let). "Don't Blow It!" (2009), Nickelodeon Comics Club.
  5. DiMartino, Michael Dante (writer) & MacMullan, Lauren (director). (February 25, 2005). "The Southern Air Temple". Avatar: The Last Airbender. Season 1. Episode 3. Nickelodeon.
  6. Hubbard, Matthew (writer) & Filoni, Dave (director). (March 25, 2005). "Imprisoned". Avatar: The Last Airbender. Season 1. Episode 6. Nickelodeon.
  7. Hedrick, Tim (writer) & Volpe, Giancarlo (director). (April 14, 2006). "The Swamp". Avatar: The Last Airbender. Season 2. Episode 4. Nickelodeon.
  8. Ehasz, Aaron (writer) & DiMartino, Michael Dante (director). (December 1, 2006). "The Crossroads of Destiny". Avatar: The Last Airbender. Season 2. Episode 20. Nickelodeon.
  9. Hamilton, Joshua (writer) & Volpe, Giancarlo (director). (November 2, 2007). "The Runaway". Avatar: The Last Airbender. Season 3. Episode 7. Nickelodeon.
  10. DiMartino, Michael Dante, Konietzko, Bryan (writers) & Dos Santos, Joaquim (director). (July 19, 2008). "Sozin's Comet, Part 4: Avatar Aang". Avatar: The Last Airbender. Season 3. Episode 21. Nickelodeon.
  11. DiMartino, Michael Dante, Konietzko, Bryan (writers) & Dos Santos, Joaquim, Ryu, Ki Hyun (directors). (April 14, 2012). "Welcome to Republic City". The Legend of Korra. Season 1. Episode 1. Nickelodeon.

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