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By Donna Flood

Velma Joneses spiritual connection

This photograph is a recording of a passing on of Velma Joneses spiritual connection through these bundles, an ancient tradition of the Ponca tribe. They will be privately handed to the women of her line at her Memorial feast, September 26, 2009 at the Standing Bear Park in Ponca City, Oklahoma. The bundles hold small symbolic objects relating to Velma's life; a pin cushion to tell of her sewing of regalia, a ceramic necklace to follow the giving of a stone, a piece of dried sage to use for a smudge, and whatever other small items Velma loved.
Here are the pictures of the bundles setting on the shelf, awaiting Saturday's Memorial Day feast when they will be handed out to the young ladies of our family as a way of remembering Grandmother Velma and a way of passing her spirit for strength of character and servitude to a new generation.

Somewhere in the distance a flute was playing while Jim White asked for a blessing upon the food.  The music lent a soft, touching nostalgia to the moment.  For flute music click on Maiden of the Woods.

Garland has his arbors up in readiness for the 125 people who will share a one year Memorial Dinner for Velma Louise Pensoneau Jones, my mother.

Garland and my husband, Rodney Flood

Garland with the trusty "duck" tape

Teepee, neighbor to the east

Neighbor to Southeast with O.U. school spirit.  Arena red and blue poles in the background.

Lined up for food being served, Sharron Roy, Oketah, Comanche in the forefront, wife of Gordon Roy

Cowboy hat in foreground

Chilocco chum, going back some, Gordon Roy

Sister Esther, not too happy with having been caught on camera while eating.  Brother Dan behind her.  He is speaking with Mary Williamson, descendant of Chief Red Leaf, her husband Bob Williamson behind her. To the far left in back ground is cousin Paulagean Wadley King whose daughter Danese and her husband Bill Lindsey brought her from the panhandle for this occasion.

DAN Jones and cousin DANese Lindsey. Danese is a former surgical nurse, who turned in that profession to work as a nurse in a birthing clinic at Wichita. Her children are grown and in professions of their own.

Doug Eagle, spiritual leader of the tribe,  is descendant of the Eagle, chief's clan.  Mother called him Brother according to Ponca relationship.  His encouraging words brought tears to my eyes as he spoke of the work Mother had done in her life.

Garland Kent and his wife Lucy, who were involved in much of the planning for this,  estimated that there were at least 125 people in attendance.  This is on the front side of the r.v. vehicle. There were people on the back side, as well.  Smoky Cole brought more chairs and tables from his camp,  so we had plenty. The Coles brought food, a large box of fried chicken was one of several things.  Everyone chipped in for the food so no one was burdened to a great extent.

Sister Esther serving the cake brother Dan Jones (on the right) brought.  The lettering said, "We miss you Mom." To the far right is Cynthia Fedders, the daughter of Martha Grass, activist and proponent for civil rights.  Cynthia brought three bushels of fry bread, all of which were rapidly consumed
Chris Little Cook and his wife, Mindy, represented Mother's Little Cook family.  Chris is over one of the educational programs for the Native Americans at the high school.  Andrew Lieb and his sister, Rose Marie represented mother's family off the line of Grandmother Elizabeth Little Cook's sisters. Rose Marie is in her 80's but drove from Phoenix, Arizona for this event. The Hernandez family was well represented by Suzi, Jeff, Derrick, Tony, Mary H. and Paul, Rameriz,  Rachel Ramirez. The Pensoneau family was represented by Charmaine, Darlene, and Steve Pensoneau. Charmaine thanked me with the most touching sentiment for the feeling she received when she opened her bundle and the fragrant sage came up to her.  She said it gave her such a strong message of Mother's presence.

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