Dorene A. Rickard, of the Tuscarora Nation, passed away in the warmth and grace of her loving family. Dorene peacefully passed during the evening of May 3rd, 2023.
She was the Clan Mother of the Tuscarora Beaver Clan. Born in Buffalo, NY on June 7, 1936, the daughter of the late Hattie (Bissell) Williams and Osborn Chew.
In her own words, she “married the boy next door, when she was 16 years old.” Dorene and Fillmore “Sonny” F. Rickard enjoyed 65 blessed years of marriage, until the passing of Sonny in 2017.
Dorene is survived by her children, Ann Printup, Martin, Theresa Wilson and Dion (Dawn) Rickard, 18 grandchildren and many great grandchildren plus nieces and nephews. She is also survived by her sister Jean Crogan.
She was predeceased by her daughter Ellene Rickard and her sisters, Margaret Rickard, Marlene Reid and Louise McKie.
One of many lasting legacies of Dorene, is her passion for traditional beadwork. At an early age, she fell in love with learning to “sew with beads” from her grandmother. She attended beading class at Tuscarora Indian School from 1970-1980 where she perfected her craft. In 1996, she was asked to help restore a Tuscarora beaded table cover from the National Museum of the American Indian. She began teaching beading classes in many surrounding communities, including her own throughout 1990 and early 2000’s. In 1998, Native American Community Services (NACS) of Erie and Niagara Counties asked her to instruct production of a velvet cape with woodland floral design and raised beadwork, a common style of beading amongst her Tuscarora Nation. It was on display at Earl Brydges Library and local suites, public buildings, fairs and throughout New York State. She was also commissioned to provide beadwork pieces to many organizations and institutions. Her love and passion for beading was passed down to her children and even grandchildren.
Dorene was also passionately involved in many community groups and organizations including Tuscarora PTA, 4H, Tuscarora Lacrosse boosters to name a few. She volunteered her time to teach baking, cooking, along with beading.
Of all her passions, Dorene was lovingly devoted to her family and friends. Her house was the center of all family functions and pop-in gatherings. Her kitchen table was always filled with family and friends then late night the games would come out which caused bent cutlery and broken furniture from her highly competitive children and grandkids. Sonny and her love and patience, radiated throughout their home, kids and their entire families.
As the Tuscarora Beaver Clan Mother, her door was always open, day and night, to not only her beaver clan members, but the entire Tuscarora Community. She was a strong supporter of her Tuscarora Nation, volunteering countless years of her life to her people. She shared her love, support and time with everyone who came to her. Her house was a safe place to all. She took in many kids who were in need of a safe and loving home.
Family and friends are welcome to attend her home at 2123 Upper Mountain Road any time on Friday and Saturday. Longhouse services will be held on Sunday, beginning at her home at 10 AM.
In lieu of flowers, her family is requesting donations to Niagara Hospice, 4675 Sunset Dr, Lockport, NY 14094.
Interment in Mt. Hope Cemetery.
Arrangements were made through the RHONEY FUNERAL HOME, Sanborn, NY.
Visit www.rhoneyfuneralhome.com, for guest register.
To send flowers
to the family or plant a tree
in memory of Dorene A. Rickard, please visit our floral store.