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Tim Ridge, 59, of Springfield, Mo., formerly of Tahlequah, OK, died Jan. 4.
Tim was born Nov. 10, 1959, at W.W. Hastings Indian Hospital, Tahlequah, the youngest child of Watie Ridge and Helen Holmes Ridge. He grew up with a large family in a loving Cherokee home and was a citizen of the Cherokee Nation of Oklahoma.
He attended school at Owen School, Sequoyah Elementary School (Tahlequah), Oaks Mission School and Tenkiller School. After completing his education he went to work in the nursery industry, and also in construction. He also completed vocational training in carpentry and heavy equipment operation through the Cherokee Nation.
Although a motorcycle accident left Tim disabled, he worked as long as he could afterwards.
Tim met Betty Smith in 2004 in Tahlequah. They were married Oct. 3, 2008, at the Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Tahlequah. Together they shared many adventures, including trips in the United States, to the British Isles and to France. In 2016 they took a truck load of food and supplies to the water protectors at Standing Rock in North Dakota, a rich and rewarding experience. Their relationship brought more joy that either had experienced before, and Tim's passing left many plans and dreams unfinished.
Tim loved spending time at home, with his family and his cats. He loved being out in the country, taking scenic drives and taking walks to admire the beauty of nature.
Tim was preceded in death by his parents and grandparents; brothers Jesse Lee Ridge, Larry Ridge, and Leslie Ridge; and sister Genanna Ridge Andrade. Surviving are his wife, Betty Smith Ridge; two children, Timothy Lee Nocona Ridge (Florinda), of Tahlequah; daughter Selena Diver of Stilwell, Oklahoma; grandchildren, including Michelle and Michael Flowers of Tahlequah; brothers Watie Ridge Jr. of Tahlequah, Charles Ridge (Wanda) of Cherokee County, Oklahoma, and Eddie Ridge (Debbie) of Tulsa; and sister Norma Jimerson (Herman) of Tahlequah; numerous nieces, nephews, other relatives and friends.
Because he has numerous family members and friends in both states, two memorial services will be held. The first will be at 2 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 12, at Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Tahlequah. The second, to be held at First Unitarian Universalist Church of Springfield, will be announced later.
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