Obituaries for Aug. 11, 2016

Eleanor “Ellie” Beck

FLAGSTAFF — Funeral visitation for Eleanor “Ellie” Beck, 56, was held Aug. 10 at Norvel Owen Mortuary. Interment followed at the Calvary Cemetery in Flagstaff.

Eleanor was born Dec. 5, 1959, at the Keams Canyon Indian Hospital in Keams Canyon, Arizona, but her parents were from Piñon, Arizona.

She was born into the Ta’neeszahnii (Tangle Clan), born for Tsé deeshgizhnii (Rock Gap Clan). Her nali is Kinyaa’áanii (Towering House Clan); cheii is Tódích’íi’nii (Bitter Water Clan). She died Aug. 6, 2016, in Phoenix, surrounded by her family.

Eleanor lived as a wife, mother, teacher, and jeweler. Her mother named her “Eleanor” because the name is distinctive. She cried on her first day of school in Piñon, and spent a couple of years at Piñon Boarding School, but during her elementary school and middle school years she moved between Provo, Utah; Lake Havasu, and Douglas, Arizona, to live with Mormon boarding families.

Eleanor moved back with her family, who were living in Chinle at the time, in the mid-1970s. She graduated from there in 1979 and soon met her future husband, then Piñon Council Delegate Victor Beck Sr., when she went looking for a job for her brother at the chapter house.

Victor and Eleanor were married in a traditional ceremony in November 1979.

Eleanor and Victor had their first child, Kehazbaa Beck, on Aug. 1, 1980. The following year, they had their second child, Nanibaa Beck, on Oct. 19, 1981. At the time they lived in Piñon, while Victor finished his council delegate term.

In 1982, Eleanor moved with her two daughters to Flagstaff, to start college at Northern Arizona University where she studied education. Victor finished his term in 1983 and moved to Flagstaff to live with his wife and daughters.

Eleanor graduated in 1986 and taught first grade the following year at Piñon Elementary School. In 1987, Victor and Eleanor returned to Flagstaff, where their daughters went to Catholic school. Eleanor worked for a short time at other nearby schools such as Tuba City, Leupp, and Cameron.

In 1993, Victor and Eleanor decided to move to Phoenix to give their daughters more educational opportunities. Eleanor nurtured her daughters’ academic endeavors and growth while Victor supported his family with his beautiful work as a jeweler.

Eleanor continued to maintain her family while also developing an interest in jewelry. Soon, she learned she was pregnant with her son, Victor Jr., in 2001 at the age of 42.

After Victor Jr., Eleanor went into jewelry like her husband. She took art classes at Maricopa Community College and started her own line of fine jewelry. She was regularly juried into prestigious fine art markets like Santa Fe Indian Market and the Heard Museum Show.

In 2014, Eleanor received an “Honorable Mention” for her contemporary jewelry at the annual Navajo Festival of Arts & Culture at the Museum of Northern Arizona.

In 2015, Eleanor was diagnosed with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, or ALS, a disease that affects the body’s ability to replenish muscle. Although diagnosed in 2015, she likely had it since 2012 or 2011. The disease progressed quickly in 2016, but Eleanor lived at home with her family and helped with their work and routines.

Eleanor is survived by her husband of 36 years, Victor Beck Sr.; daughters, Kehazbaa Beck (Philip Benzie) and Nanibaa Beck (Andrew Curley); son, Victor Beck Jr.; parents, Rena Begay and Ben Henry Begay; siblings, Larry Begay, Leroy Begay (Rochelle Begay), Treva Begay, Carol Raye, Verlinda (Edward Folghraiter), and Clara Ann (Tony Bighorse); grandson, Nathan Benzie; and many nephews and nieces whom she loved.

The family is accepting donations to help with the funeral costs and medical expenses. The family is also accepting electronic donations through the Go Fund Me website at

Duane Roanhorse Crawford

ST. MICHAELS, Ariz. — Funeral services for Duane Roanhorse Crawford, 56, of Manuelito Canyon, New Mexico, will be held Friday, Aug. 12, at 10 a.m. at the Mary, Mother of Mankind Church in St. Michaels, Arizona, with Jose Gutay officiating.

Duane was born April 12, 1961, in Fort Defiance, into the Dibé łzhini (Black Sheep Clan), born for Kinyaa’áanii (Towering House Clan). He died Aug. 2, 2016, in Gallup.

Duane graduated from Tuba City High School in 1978 and attended Ganado Preparatory College, Northern Arizona University and the University of Arizona.

Duane was employed as a silversmith and jewelry designer. He enjoyed the outdoors, horseback riding, and was an avid reader.

Duane is survived by his father, Eugene Crawford Jr.; and sister, Taina Jean Smith.

Duane is preceded in death by his sister, Yvonne Crawford; mother, Ninabah Morgan Cahn; and grandparents, Herbert and Louise Morgan.

Pallbearers will be Mathew Morgan, Richard Morgan Jr., Erwin Roan, Patrick Laughing, Shawn Drake, and Darrell Kaulity.

Honorary pallbearers will be Mike Crawford, Mark Crawford, Darrell Bennett, Michael Bennett, Gerald Begay, and Pedro Reyna.

A reception will take place at St. Michaels Chapter House following services.

Silver Creek Mortuary is in charge of arrangements.

Naswood Bahe

GALLUP — Funeral services for Naswood Bahe, 84, will be held Friday, Aug. 12, at 10 a.m. at Rollie Mortuary in Gallup. Burial will follow at the Hillcrest Cemetery in Gallup.

Naswood was born in December 1931 in Pretty Rock, New Mexico, located west of Gallup, into the Kinyaa’áanii (Towering House Clan), born for Naakai Dine’é (Mexican Clan). His nali is Haltsooi (Meadow People); chei is Tsi’naajinii (Black Streak Wood People). He died Aug. 6, 2016, at McKinley Manor in Gallup.

Naswood worked on railroad and road construction projects.

Naswood is survived by his sons, James, Stephen, Jerry, Jason, and Jonathan; daughters, Marie and Evelyn; and sisters, Zonnie Bahe, Neddie John, Irene Little, Dorothy Bahe-Long, and Marie Howe.

Naswood is preceded in death by his parents, Hosteen and Glenhasbah Bahe; wife, Sarah Spencer Bahe; and three brothers and two sisters.

Rollie Mortuary is in charge of arrangements.

Sina Taufete’e

LAKESIDE, Ariz. — Funeral services for Sina Taufete’e, 14, of Lakeside, Ariz., will be held Friday, Aug. 12, at 10 a.m. at the Living Church (3072 Lockwood Drive) in Lakeside.

Sina was born in Tracy, California. She passed away July 30, 2016.

Sina was a member of a dancing group for the Ignite Christian Leadership Center in Show Low, Arizona. She performed in different areas around the Navajo Nation.

For more information, contact Bruce Hackett at 928-245-7805.

Betty Jean Morris

GALLUP — Funeral services for Betty Jean Morris, 75, were held Aug. 6 at Rollie Mortuary in Gallup. Interment followed at the Lone Pine Cemetery in Mexican Springs, New Mexico.

Betty was born Feb. 25, 1941, into the Deeshchii’nii (Start of the Red Streak People Clan), born for Áshįįhí (Salt People Clan). She died Aug. 1, 2016.

Betty is survived by her husband, Irving Nez; and sons, Alvin Morris, Ambrose Morris, Vincent Morris, and William Nez; and brother, James Morris.

Rollie Mortuary was in charge of arrangements.

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Categories: Obituaries