In Memoriam
Lila  Mae  Yahola
Sequoyah   Student ~ 1920s

Lila Mae Yahola-Lee-Rivers , enrolled Cherokee woman, formerly of Oklahoma passed away in Ceres, California on August 17, 2006. She was the granddaughter of Wash Downing and daughter of John Yahola and Laura Downing, all members of the Cherokee.

Lila would have been ninety-six years old the sixteenth of October, 2006.

     Lila was born in the Cookson Hills and resided in Sequoyah and Muskogee counties until the mid-fifties when she relocated to California.

     Lila attended the Sequoyah Indian School at Tahlequah through the tenth grade  (About 1925) . She later married Spi Jim Lee of Gore and together they had five children, four of whom survive. Charlie Vann Lee, retired USAF, preceded her in death at Okmulgee, Oklahoma in 2003. Her two husbands, Spi Jim Lee and Chester A. R ivers also preceded her in death.

     Surviving children include Henry Edward Lee, retired USN, of Mendon, Michigan; Dr. James Lynn Lee, retired dentist, Chehalis, Washington; Dorothy Jancie Lee-Speetzen, graduate University of California, Berkley, Orinda, California and Johnnie Ogden Lee, veteran USN of Turlock, California. Two other children, Michael Rivers veteran USA, and Joan Rivers-Weaver, veteran USAF, who reside in California and Pennsylvania, respectively survive from her union with Chester Rivers. There are twelve living grandchildren and numerous great grandchildren as well.

     Cremation was carried out by The Neptune Society in California, a private memorial was held in California and burial will be at the Box Cemetery, new Vian, Oklahoma in the spring of 2007, Crosslin Smith officiating.


Lila M. Rivers
Oct. 16, 1910 Aug. 17, 2006

Lila Mae Yahola Rivers , 95, of Modesto, Ca. died Thursday at her home.

     Mrs. Rivers was a native of Vian, Okla., and lived in Modesto 53 years. She was a sorter at Diamond Walnuts for 22 years and line worker at Campbell Soup for 18 years. During World War II, she was a laundry supervisor for the military. She enjoyed sewing, gardening, reading and crossword puzzles.

     She is survived by her children, Henry Lee of Mendon, Mich., James Lee of Chehalis, Wash., John Lee of Turlock, Michael Rivers of Modesto, Janice Speetzen of Orinda and Joan Weaver of Howard; and 14 grandchildren and 15 great-grandchildren. She was preceded in death by her son, Charles Lee.

No services. Neptune Society of Central California in charge of arrangements.
The Modesto Bee ~ Modesto, Ca.