Eugene Blackbear Sr.
Funeral services for Eugene Blackbear Sr., 83, Ceremonial Chief of the Cheyenne Tribe, were scheduled for 11 a.m. today in the Watonga Community Building, officiated by Floyd Bearing, Mike Burgess and Wallace Ashley.
Burial will conclude in the IOOF Cemetery in Watonga, under the direction of the Kiesau-Lee Funeral Home, Clinton.
A traditional all night wake service was held Tuesday in the Watonga Community Building, officiated by Kathy Longhat and Lyman Weasel Bear.
Blackbear died Saturday, April 5, 2014, in the Hillcrest Hospital in Tulsa. He was born Aug. 20, 1930 and was the only son of Ralph Paul Blackbear and Stella Minnie Red Wolf and the grandson of
Old Man Blackbear, Little Yellow Woman, John Red Wolfe and Ida Walker in Watonga.
He was raised in the Watonga area and attended the Enterprise Country School.
He later enlisted in the U.S. Air Force, and after he returned home he married Stella “Bessie” Romannose in 1952 in Watonga.
In his younger years, Blackbear worked on farms, did construction work and was a truck driver.
He moved to the Dallas-Fort Worth area for several years before moving back to Oklahoma in 2003 and settling back in Watonga.
He was a well-respected Cheyenne Ceremonial Chief, served as the Arrow Priest, Sundance Priest, and was a member of the Bow String Society.
He was a longtime member of the Native American Church, serving as a Roadman, and attended meetings all over the country.
He was an ordained minister and was recognized by the Sioux Nation. He served as the 13th Business Committee member for the Cheyenne and Arapaho Tribes.
He had a unique opportunity and was honored by playing the role as a Cheyenne Chief in the 1995 movie “Last of the Dog Men.”
He, along with two other Cheyenne Sundance Priests, revived the Sundance, and it has flourished into what it is has become today.
Preceding him in death were his parents; grandparents; two sisters, Imogene Blackbear-Big Medicine and Roberta Black; two daughters, Barbara (Blackbear) Lone Elk and Frances Verna Doctor.
Survivors include eight children, Eugene Blackbear Jr. and his wife, Aurelia, Rex Paul Blackbear and his wife, Phyllis, Roberta Ann Blackbear, Wilma Joyce Whitebird and her husband, Malcom, Ralph Briscoe Blackbear and his wife Senoria, Ida Parton and her husband, Kenneth, Fredrick Blackbear and Imogene Elizabeth Blackbear, all of Watonga.