Editor’s note: Juanita Jeanette Keel Tate attended Bacone College.
|JUANITA JEANETTE KEEL TATE|
Funeral services for Juanita Jeanette Keel Tate, 101, of Ardmore, Oklahoma, are scheduled for 10 a.m. Monday, February 13, 2012, at Northwest Baptist Church, Ardmore, Oklahoma, with the Reverend Leonard Ezell officiating.Interment will follow at the Keel Cemetery, north of Lebanon, Oklahoma. A time of visitation and support for the family will be held from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday at the Harvey-Douglas Funeral Home.
Juanita was born on September 10, 1910, in Ardmore, Oklahoma, to Guy Keel, Chickasaw Roll No. 1866 and Lula Potts Keel, Chickasaw Roll No. 1867. She passed to eternal life on February 8, 2012, in Ardmore, Oklahoma.
She was the 10th child among 12 brothers and sisters. Her father gave her the Chickasaw name of Foshi’ (bird). She attended Bloomfield Academy and Lincoln School in Ardmore, and then attended Chilocco Indian School beginning in 1922, graduating in 1928. In recognition of her lifetime achievements, she was inducted into the Chilocco Hall of Fame in 1987.
Following her graduation from Chilocco, she attended and graduated from the Ardmore Business College and then attended one year at Bacone College in Muskogee, Oklahoma.
In 1934, she married Ernest W. Tate. She made a career as a court reporter, legal secretary and homemaker.
For her entire adult life she was active in Chickasaw affairs, holding offices in the Chickasaw-Choctaw Confederation, the Atoka Treaty Rights Association, the Tifahaya Inter-tribal Club, as well as the Ohoyohoma (Indian women) Club.
Beginning in 1970, she was deeply involved in the transition which the Chickasaw Nation made from a nearly terminated tribe to the flourishing sovereign nation it is today, being a leader in the movement to reestablish Constitutional government in her tribe.
In 2008, because of her contributions to the Chickasaw Nation, she was inducted into the Chickasaw Nation Hall of Fame.
An accomplished painter, she painted portraits of Chickasaws and Choctaws as well as a number of historical Chickasaw and Choctaw buildings around southern Oklahoma.
She established herself as a historian and genealogist in the 1960s and published a book about her great-grandfather, Edmund Pickens, in 2008.
Juanita joined the Ardmore Order of the Eastern Star in 1936, and was a past matron and active member the rest of her life.
She was also a member of the United Daughters of the Confederacy, Chickasaw Chapter, in Ardmore and was a charter member of the Keel Cemetery Association.
Her historical interests included the Greater Southwest Historical Museum in Ardmore, and she was inducted into the Hall of Fame of the museum.
In 2011, she was inducted into the Oklahoma Historians Hall of Fame by the Oklahoma Historical Society.
She was a member of the Northwest Baptist Church where she attended the Adult I Sunday School Class.
Juanita was preceded in death by her parents and siblings. Her husband, Ernest W. Tate preceded her in death in December, 1981.
Juanita is survived by her daughters, Anne Tate Boland of Houston, Texas, and Gwen Gentry of Friendswood, Texas; son, Charles Guy Tate and his wife, Patty of Ardmore, Oklahoma; and son, John Schuh and his wife, Judy of Lake Dallas, Texas.
Also surviving are 13 grandchildren: Karl R. Boland and wife, Helen, Midland, Texas, Jennifer Lewis and husband, Phil, League City, Texas, Paula Klewer and husband, Steve, Alvin, Texas, Sarah Sabayrac, Friendswood, Texas, Brenda Gentry, Newark, Del., Brad Tate and wife, Jennifer, Ardmore, Okla., Jerod Impichchaachaaha Tate, Oklahoma City, Okla., Shana Tate Hammond and husband, Bruce, Ardmore, Okla., Ryan Tate, Gainesville, Texas, J. Schuh and wife, Rachel, Dallas, Texas, Janel Schuh, Lake Dallas, Texas, Joel Schuh and wife, Jennifer, Plano, Texas, and Jocelyn Schuh, Lake Dallas, Texas.
Other survivors include 12 great-grandchildren: Katie Boland Belknap and husband, Josh, Emily and Nicole Lewis, Dylan and Alyssa Sabayrac, David and Jake Klewer, Lauren and Cole Hammond, Aiden Tate, Benjamin and Emily Schuh; and a great-great-granddaughter, MaKenna Belknap. In addition, she is survived by several nieces and nephews.
Pallbearers are Karl Boland, Brad Tate, Jerod Tate, Ryan Tate, Bruce Hammond, Steve Klewer, Phil Lewis, Jay Schuh, Joel Schuh, Josh Belknap and Dylan Sabayrac.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to Northwest Baptist Church and Chickasaw Foundation.
Services are under the care of Harvey-Douglas Funeral Home and Crematory of Ardmore.