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Obituaries for Jan.13, 2022

Shirlee M. Atkinson

Shirlee M. Atkinson

TOHATCHI, N.M. – Funeral services for Shirlee Mae Atkinson, 79, of Tohatchi, New Mexico, were held Jan. 10 at St. Mary’s Catholic Church in Tohatchi, with Father Dale Jamison officiating.

Shirlee was born April 1, 1942, in Tohatchi, into the Naashaashí (Bear Clan), born for Tódích’íi’nii (Bitter Water Clan). She passed away Jan. 2, 2022, in Gallup.

Shirlee attended Cathedral High School in Gallup, and was employed with the Navajo Nation Tohatchi Senior Center and Tohatchi Middle School. She enjoyed watching her favorite TV series, reading Tony Hillerman books, and attending her great-grandchildren’s school activities.

Shirlee is survived by her son, Gregory Atkinson; daughter, Michelle Harvey; brother, Dennis Becenti; sister, Dorothy Becenti; and five grandchildren and five great-grandchildren.

Shirlee is preceded in death by her parents, Margaret and Thomas Becenti; adopted parents, Minnie and Nelson Emerson; sisters, Mary Becenti and Rita B. Lizah; and brother, Eugene Becenti.

Pallbearer was Sgt. W. Cihlar Harvey.

Rollie Mortuary was in charge of arrangements.

Charlena J. Haines

Charlena J. Haines

GALLUP – Funeral services for Charlena Julia Haines, 33, of Red Rock, New Mexico, were held Jan. 10 at the Lighthouse Church in Gallup, with Pastor Bill Overton officiating. Interment followed at the Gallup City Cemetery.

Charlena was born Dec. 30, 1988, in Gallup, into the Tódích’íi’nii (Bitter Water Clan), born for Tsi’naajinii (Black Streak Wood People Clan). She passed away Jan. 4, 2022, in Gallup.

Charlena graduated from Wingate High School and was employed with Gallup McKinley County School as a C team volleyball coach. She enjoyed spending time with family and friends, traveling, fishing, watching sporting events, and was a team mom for the New Mexico Lady Titans.

Charlena is survived by her husband, William W. Haines Jr.; daughter, Seniah Julia Haines; parents, Charlene and Thomas Yazzie; brothers, Thomas Yazzie Jr., Brandon Yazzie and Tristan Yazzie; and sisters, Normanda Joe and Charmayne Yazzie.

Charlena is preceded in death by her brother, Thurman Yazzie.

Pallbearers were Brandon Yazzie, Thomas Yazzie Jr., Tristan Yazzie, Calvin Haines, Alex Begay, and Austin Begay.

Rollie Mortuary was in charge of arrangements.

Mario T. Samuels

Mario T. Samuels

GALLUP – Funeral services for Mario Terry “Jimmy” Samuels, 59, of Vanderwagen, New Mexico, will be held today, Jan. 13, at 10 a.m., the East Aztec Baptist Church in Gallup, with Richard Malone officiating. Burial will follow at Sunset Memorial Park in Gallup.

Mario was born Jan. 19, 1962, in Los Angeles, California, into the Tábąąhá (Water’s Edge Clan), born for Tódích’íi’nii (Bitter Water Clan). He passed away Jan. 4, 2022, in Mentmore, New Mexico.

Mario graduated from Gallup High School in 1979 and started employment with Church’s and Days Inn where he met his wife Sharon. He also worked at Red Roof Inn, Lowe’s, and Phillips 66, but he loved his job as a supervisor with High Country Transportation until he retired in 2018.

Mario enjoyed word searches, building classic car models, puzzles, collecting coins, Joker items, Hot Wheel cars, and anything Seattle Seahawks. He loved spending his days with his wife and fur babies, taking walks, going for drives, and most of all, he enjoyed the company with his family and grandchildren.

Mario is survived by his wife, Sharon Samuels; brothers Ferguson Samuels, Curtis Samuels and Francis Samuels; sisters, Judy, Victoria, Elizabeth, Christina, and Theresa; and many grandchildren.

Mario is preceded in death by his mother, Nancy Willis; and brother, Wilbert Samuels.

Pallbearers will be Larry Livingston, Warren Bernal, Jared Howe, David Smith III, Randell Bennett, Robin Bennett, Josh Kenny, and Larry Florence.

Honorary pallbearers will be Ferguson Samuels, Curtis Samuels, Francis Samuels, William Bennett, Chris Florence Sr., and Venton Samuels.

There will be no reception due to COVID-19.

Rollie Mortuary is in charge of arrangements.

Craig Avery

Craig Avery

CHINLE — Graveside service for Craig Avery, 45, of Chinle, will be held Saturday, Jan. 15, at 10 a.m., at the Chinle community cemetery with Bishop Miller officiating.

Craig was born June 15, 1976, in Gallup, into the Honágháahnii (One-walks-around Clan), born for Tsi’naajinii (Black Streak Wood People Clan). His nalí is Tó’áhaní (Near the Water Clan); cheii is Kinyaa’áanii” (Towering House Clan). He passed away Jan. 6, 2022, at the University of Utah Hospital in Salt Lake City, Utah.

Craig attended Puerco Valley Elementary in Sanders, Arizona, and Washington Elementary in Gallup, Sanders Middle School; graduating from Valley High School in 1994. He then attended Diné College earning an associate in 2008 and Northern Arizona University earning a bachelor’s degree in 2012.

Craig was employed with Chinle Indian Health Service Diabetes Program. He also worked for Navajo Nation Special Diabetes Program in Chinle, Tsaile Health Center, and Chinle Comprehensive Health Care Center.

Craig was a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. He enjoyed golfing, outdoor running, hiking, fishing, grilling, shooting guns, playing basketball, carpentry, mechanics, coaching youth basketball, watching movies, and was a Tour de France enthusiast and Phoenix Suns/Dallas Cowboys fan.

Craig is survived by his wife, Nancy Avery; sons, Ephraim, Matthew, Joshua, Elijah, and Isaiah Avery; daughter-in-law, Tiara Yazzie; parents, Rose and Francis Avery of Querino Canyon, Arizona; brother, Greg Avery of Chandler, Arizona; sisters, Christie Avery and Crystal Avery, both of Mesa, Arizona; granddaughter, Ava Yazzie.

Craig is preceded in death by Matilda Martine, Celso Tabaha, Frank Avery Yazzie, Alice Thomas Duboise, Elmer Tabaha, Herman Tabaha, Wilbert Tabaha. And brother in-law Darrell Curley, father in-law Ned. C. Curley Sr.

Pallbearers will be Ephraim Avery, Joshua Avery, Wendal Thompson, Derek Avery, Jared Joe, Greg Avery, and Matthew Avery.

A drive-thru curbside reception will take place at the LDS Church in Chinle, following service.

Summit Mortuary is in charge of arrangements.

Deion D. Ortiz

Deion D. Ortiz

YAH-TA-HEY, N.M. – Funeral services for Deion Dean Ortiz, 21, of Gallup, will be held Saturday, Jan. 15, at 10 a.m., at the Saad Bee Iinaa Ba Hooghan Church in Yah-Ta-Hey, New Mexico, with Pastor Olin and Janelle Bluehouse officiating. Burial will follow at Sunset Memorial Park in Gallup.

Deion was born April 19, 2000, in Gallup. He passed away Jan. 1, 2022, in Phoenix.

Deion enjoyed sketching, singing, skateboarding, going to church, reading the bible, basketball, fitness, listening to music, and writing lyrics.

Deion is survived by his parents, Lenora Yazzie and Ronrick Ortiz; brothers, Jasper Ortiz and Eli Perez; sister, Ronrica Ortiz; maternal grandparents, Charlotte and Henry T. Yazzie; and paternal grandparents, Anna and Ray Arviso.

Deion is preceded in death by Dr. Henry T. Yazzie.

Pallbearers will be Darius Arviso, Darren Boone, Derrick Ortiz, Gabriel Ortiz Edison, Jeremiah Ortiz, Kirby Storer, Lorenzo Smith, Myles Whitehair, Nathan Ortiz, and Rhett Hooper.

Honorary pallbearers will be Adam Yazzie, Bodhi Boone, Curt Newingham, Eli Perez, Jasper Ortiz, Kaleb Pablo, Quincey Yazzie, and Quintyn Yazzie.

Rollie Mortuary is in charge of arrangements.

Helen M. Yazzie

Helen M. Yazzie

CHINLE — Graveside service for Helen M. Yazzie, 80, of Klagetoh, Arizona, will be held Friday, Jan. 14, at 10 a.m., at the Chinle community cemetery.

Helen was born April 8, 1941, into the Tsénjíkiní (Honey Combed Rock People Clan), born for Tsi’naajinii (Black Streak Wood People Clan).

Helen is survived by her daughters, Roncelle L. Carroll and Cassandra L. Bert; sons, Carlos G. Yazzie, Delbert G. Yazzie and Emmett L. Yazzie; and 10 grandchildren and nine great-grandchildren.

Helen is preceded in death by her husband, Carl Yazzie Jr.; mother, Elise T. Yazzie; father, Billy T. Yazzie; and sister, Marie A. Tapahe.

A gathering will take place today, Jan. 13, in Chinle (2.5 miles north of Bashas’, east of milepost 450.5) from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m.

Genevieve Whitman

GALLUP – Funeral services for Genevieve Whitman, 63, of Vanderwagen, New Mexico, were held Jan. 11 at Rollie Mortuary in Gallup. Interment followed in Gallup.

Genevieve was born April 8, 1959, in Rehoboth, New Mexico, into the Táchii’nii (Red Running Into the Water People Clan), born for Tsi’naajinii (Black Streak Wood People Clan). She passed away Jan. 4, 2022, in Farmington.

Genevieve earned an associate in medical science and enjoyed taking care of livestock, knitting, reading the bible, and spending time with family.

Genevieve is survived by her husband, Terry Whitman; sons, Gabriel Livingston, Davidson Livingston and Leroy Livingston Jr.; daughters, Sophina Livingston and Geneva Livingston; and father, Tommy Livingston.

Genevieve is preceded in death by her mother, Mary Skeet; uncle, Tom Lee Skeet; brother, Leroy Livingston Sr.; and sister, Melody Hoskie-Torres.

Rollie Mortuary was in charge of arrangements.

Andrew C. Dennison

HOUCK, Ariz. — Funeral services for Andrew Chester Dennison, 81, of Sanders, Arizona, will be held Friday, Jan. 14, at 12 p.m., at the Navajo Assembly of God Church in Houck, Arizona, with Rev. Pete Cordova Jr. officiating. Burial will follow at the McCarrell Community Cemetery in Chambers, Arizona.

Andrew was born April 28, 1940, in Chambers, into the Honágháahnii (One-walks-around Clan), born for Kinłichíi’nii (Red House People Clan). He passed away Jan. 7, 2022, in Avondale, Arizona.

Andrew graduated from Albuquerque Indian School in 1960 and worked as an iron welder in Chicago, from 1960 to 1964. He also worked at Sanders Unified School District as a maintenance worker, bus driver, and supervisor from 1975 to 2005.

Andrew loved sports, especially basketball, swimming, and track and field. He never knew when to quit working and was always busy.

Andrew’s favorite teams were the Chicago Bulls and San Francisco 49ers. He enjoyed walking and spending time with his family and grandchildren. He was a godly man who loved the Lord with all his heart.

Andrew is survived by his son, Clay Dennison; daughters, Cherise Dennison Nelson and Cleo Dennison; brother, Lester Dennison; sister, Lucy Dennison Zimmerman; and 13 grandchildren and one great-grandchild.

Andrew is preceded in death by his spouse, Ardis J. Dennison; children, Lila Dennison and Chad Dennison; and parents, Mary and John Garrett Dennison.

Pallbearers will be Andrew Cordova, Cassian Cordova, Titus Cordova, Cameron Pantoja, Myron Dennison, and Alex Dennison.

Honorary pallbearers will be Clay Dennison, Rex Nelson and Warren Dennison.

A reception will take place at the Nahata Dziil Chapter House, following services.

Silver Creek Mortuary is in charge of arrangements.

Irving P. Brady

COALMINE, N.M. – Graveside service for Irving Paul Brady, 69, of Coalmine, New Mexico, was held Jan. 7 in Coalmine, with Jerry Tom officiating.

Irving was born Dec. 23, 1952, in Fort Defiance, into the Táchii’nii (Red Running Into the Water People Clan), born for Tótsohnii (Big Water Clan). He passed away Jan. 3, 2022, in Fort Defiance.

Irving attended Morenci High School, University of New Mexico in Albuquerque, Northern Arizona University in Flagstaff, and Eastern Arizona College in Thatcher, Arizona. He retired from Navajo Nation Water Management and enjoyed the outdoors and reading novels.

Irving is survived by his brothers, Francis Brady Jr. and Herbert Braidhair; and sisters, Julie Francisco, Karen Little Elk, Rose Lee, and Barbara Brady.

Irving is preceded in death by his parents, Marian and Francis Brady Sr.

Pallbearers were Jeffrey Francisco, Brandon Nez, Jeffrey Lee, and Aaron Nez.

Silver Creek Mortuary was in charge of arrangements.

John Tsinajinnie Jr.

KLAGETOH, Ariz. — Graveside service for John Tsinajinnie Jr., 61, of Klagetoh, Arizona, was held Jan. 12 in Klagetoh, with David Moncibaez officiating.

John was born March 20, 1960, in Ganado, Arizona, into the Tábąąhá (Water’s Edge Clan), born for Tsi’naajinii (Black Streak Wood People Clan). He passed away Jan. 3, 2022, in Klagetoh.

John graduated from Ganado High School and was a former Navajo Police officer. He loved his dogs, liked to take walks, and watch NFL football, especially Tom Brady.

John is survived by his son, André West James of Sanders, Arizona; daughter, Rashanda James of Wide Ruins, Arizona; brothers, Johnson Tsinajinnie of Kinlichee, Arizona, and Ray Tsinajinnie of Spokane, Washington; sisters, Ada Denny of Spokane, Edith Lee of Klagetoh, Marilyn Tsinajinnie of Klagetoh, Marita Van Winkle of Nazlini, Arizona, and Martha Tsinajinnie of Klagetoh; and five grandchildren.

John is preceded in death by his parents, Marie and John Tsinajinnie; significant other, Marcilena Nez; and four nephews.

Pallbearers were André Wes James, Nicholas Rogers, Nathaniel Wilson, and Brent Baldwin.

Honorary pallbearers were Johnson Tsinajinnie and Ray Tsinajinnie.

Silver Creek Mortuary was in charge of arrangements.

Irvin B. Jim Sr.

WIDE RUINS, Ariz. – Graveside service for Irvin Bert Jim Sr., 58, of Wide Ruins, Arizona, will be held today, Jan. 13, at 10 a.m., at the Wide Ruins community cemetery.

Irvin was born May 28, 1963, in Blanco, New Mexico, into the Naashaashí (Bear Clan), born for Ta’neeszahnii (Tangle Clan). He passed away Jan. 2, 2022, in Albuquerque.

Irvin earned a GED diploma and was self-employed as a sand-painter and part landscaper. He enjoyed sand-painting, playing pool, being a mechanic and landscaper, and told everyone to always push forward.

Irvin is survived by his sons, Irvin B. Jim Jr., Anthony B. Jim and Mathew B. Jim; daughter, Danielle S. Jim; brothers, Wilfred Jim, Kevin Jim, Melvin Jim, and Casey Jim; sisters, Bernice Strait, Prescilla Jim and Cecelia Chavez; and 11 grandchildren.

Irvin is preceded in death by his brothers, Allen Woody and Alfred Jim.

Pallbearers will be Anthony B. Jim, Eric Jim, Burgess Prentiss, Edison Jim, Leanderson Yazzie, and Harrison Jim.

Honorary pallbearer will be Irvin B. Jim Jr.

A reception will take place in Wide Ruins, following service.

Silver Creek Mortuary is in charge of arrangements.

Eric J. Thomas

Eric Jay Thomas

MANUELITO, N.M. — Funeral services for Eric Jay Thomas, 50, of Iyanbito, New Mexico, will be held Tuesday, Jan. 18, at 10 a.m., at the Church of God in Manuelito, New Mexico, with Dennis Thomas officiating. Burial will follow at Sunset Memorial in Gallup.

Eric was born Nov. 9, 1971, in Gallup, into the Honágháahnii (One-walks-around Clan), born for Bit’ahnii (Under His Cover Clan). He passed away Jan. 3, 2022, in Portland, Oregon.

Eric attended Gallup High School and worked with Union Pacific Railroad for 30 years as a foreman until his passing. He liked spending time with family, watching the Los Angeles Dodgers, and cheering for the Raiders.

Eric is survived by his wife, Claudia Thomas; parents, Emerson and Sylvia Thomas; sister, Tyndra Thomas; and three sons, two stepsons, two daughters, and five grandchildren.

Thomas is preceded in death by Wilbur R. Nelson Sr.

Honorary pallbearers will be Seth Thomas, Tyrone Thomas, Thurman Thomas, Anfernee Begay, Triston Chee, Merle Jones, Kenny Blacksmith, Josiah Thomas, and Corby Charlie.

A reception will take place at the Gallup Community Center, following services.

Rollie Mortuary is in charge of arrangements.

Dewayne Francisco

GALLUP – Funeral services for Dewayne Francisco, 29, of Jones Ranch, New Mexico, were held Jan. 11 at the Seven Day Adventist Church in Gallup, with Jonathan Begay officiating. Interment followed in Tohatchi, New Mexico.

Dewayne was born in Ganado, Arizona. He passed away Jan. 1, 2022, in Jones Ranch.

Dewayne attended David Skeet Elementary School and Gallup Middle School, graduating from Seven Day Adventist School in 2014 in Holbrook, Arizona. He enjoyed reading his bible, fishing, jogging, and helping family and friends.

Dewayne is survived by his parents, Glory Begay and Alan and Lynda Francisco; brothers, Tony Cadman and Richard Dalton; and sisters, Michelle Martin, Teresa Begay, Tina Talley, and Kimberly Cadman.

Dewayne is preceded in death by his father, Toney Cadman Sr.

Honorary pallbearers were Jeffery Jim, Leo Henderson, Virgil Chee, and Eddie Rodriguez.

Silver Creek Mortuary was in charge of arrangements.

The Navajo Times publishes obituaries free of charge as a public service. If you have an obituary you would like to submit, follow this link to the online submission form. We look forward to serving you.


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