Leona Claymore loved her culture


Mass of Christian Burial for Leona M. Claymore, 91, of Kenel, was held Monday, April 30, 2012, at the Catholic Church of Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary in Kenel.

Leona passed away Tuesday, April 24, 2012, at Mobridge Regional Hospital.
Leona was born June 23, 1920, in Fort Yates, N.D., to Mary Halsey Many Wounds.  She grew up near Little Eagle and attended boarding school in Fort Yates.

In 1937 she married Sam Claymore.  They made their living ranching with their six children near Kenel. Leona spent most of her years raising children, teaching the traditions and the values, cooking, cleaning, and all the work that goes with being a rancher’s wife, a grandma, a mom, an aunty, and a cowgirl.

Leona had a love for her culture and spoke the Lakota language fluently.  She enjoyed attending powwows and visiting with all her friends and relatives.

 Leona was a dedicated Catholic and attended church on a regular basis. She worked for Standing Rock Sioux Tribe in various positions. She also managed the “Snack Bar” at the old Standing Rock Community College.  She served on the Standing Rock Sioux Tribal Council as the Kenel District Representative.

In 2003 she moved from Mobridge to Kenel and lived with her daughter Dolly.  In 2007 she moved to the Golden LivingCenter in Mobridge.

Leona is survived by her sons, Duane (Sissy) of Kenel, Sam “Chuck” (Kim) of Kenel; and her daughters, Shirley Billingsley of Madras, Ore., Maxine “Sis” (Duane) Phillips of Fort Yates, Marie (Fred) Baker of Bismarck, N.D., and Sydney “Dolly” Claymore of Kenel; adopted son Lloyd Thompson; 29 grand children, 48 great-grandchildren, and 25 great-great-grandchildren.

Leona was preceded in death by her husband Sam, her great-granddaughter Rachael Rae Claymore and her grandsons Rodney “Noky” Dunn and Clay Claymore.

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