OBITUARY

Susie B. Spencer

December 21, 1929March 27, 2021
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Susie (Birdtail) Spencer was born on December 21, 1929 in Braggs, Oklahoma. She passed from this life on March 27, 2021 surrounded by her family at Hillcrest heart ICU in Tulsa, Oklahoma at the age of 91. Susie lived with her family in Braggs, Oklahoma in the area now designated as Camp Gruber where she attended Lone Springs school until they were required to relocate to Tahlequah near Birdtail Addition, where she later graduated from Wolf Springs School. She continued to assist at home with her younger brother and sisters as well as gaining employment as a seamstress and housekeeper. Susie was a Full Blood Cherokee native speaker and a member of the Cherokee Nation of Oklahoma. With her sisters and cousins, Susie often walked to town, attending social events such as baseball games and dances. At one such dance in 1951 she met her future husband, Charlie Thomas Spencer. They soon fell in love and were married. In march 1952, Charlie was involved in a car wreck which left him paralyzed and in June, Charlie and Susie welcomed their daughter Juanita. Although they were denied more children of their own, they opened their hearts and their home to numerous children through the years, lovingly providing more than just a warm bed and a full tummy, though Susie was perhaps best known for her delicious home cooking and delectable deserts. Many of these children, who called her Aunt or Grandma, grew up to later bring their own children to experience her unique warmth and love. She freely taught generations how to play wa-hoo!, sew, quilt, crochet, embroider, cook, can, garden and maintain a household including upkeep and repairs, even after Charlie passed in 1991. Susie was a “Renaissance” Woman, seeming to have a knack for nearly everything, but especially for creating unique handmade products to be given as presents or donated to worthy causes.

Susie is preceded in death by her father, John Birdtail and her mother, Nancy (Candy) Birdtail; husband of 47 years, Charlie Thomas Spencer, six brothers: Jim, Charley, Bill, Richard, Sam and Lee Birdtail as well as four sisters: Sallie Birdtail (infant), Maggie McElhaney, Annie Jumper and Jean Sam.

She is survived by her daughter Juanita (Spencer) Gay of Welling, grandchildren Thomas Gay of Tahlequah and wife Melissa, and Miriam (Gay) Hathcoat of Welling and husband, Josh; 8 great-grandchildren: Damon Gay, Katherine (Grace) Gay, Miranda Gay, Dylan Hathcoat, Aurora Hathcoat and Evangeline Gay, all of Tahlequah, Taylor Gay of Tulsa and Jonah Gay; and 2 great great-grandchildren, Aussa Thompson and Vada Maness-Gay, as well as numerous family and friends.

A viewing is scheduled for Friday, April 2, 2021 from 2:00-6:00 at Reed-Culver Funeral Home (117 W Delaware St. | Tahlequah, OK). Services will be at Tahlequah Church of the Nazarene (20443 E Allen Rd | Tahlequah, OK) by Pastor Austin Troyer, 1:00 on Monday April 5, 2021 with interment following at Ft. Gibson Citizens Cemetery (84 S Gladd Rd. | Fort Gibson, OK). Pallbearers are Damon Gay, Dylan Hathcoat, Taylor Gay, Roger Sam, Leonard Sam, Reyes Gaytan. Honorary pallbearers are Matthew Jumper, Merrill Lewis, Jerry McElhaney and Brian Spencer.

  • PALLBEARERS

  • Damon Gay
  • Dylan Hathcoat
  • Taylor Gay
  • Roger Sam
  • Leonard Sam
  • Reyes Gaytan
  • Matthew Jumper, Honorary
  • Merill Lewis, Honorary
  • Jerry McElhaney, Honorary
  • Brian Spencer, Honorary

Services

  • Visitation

    Friday, April 2, 2021

  • Funeral Service

    Monday, April 5, 2021

Memories

Susie B. Spencer

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Shirley Mullen

March 30, 2021

I love you Sue and I'm happy you have been in my life. I know you are having a wonderful time in Heaven with our loved ones. Best stepmother a girl could have.

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