Mankiller Remembered

Tahlequah, OK – Cherokee's Mankiller remembered as humble patriot

TAHLEQUAH, Okla. (AP) Former Cherokee Nation Chief Wilma Mankiller is being remembered as a patriot who was remarkable for both her strength and humility.

Hundreds of members of the Cherokee Nation and 170 tribal, state and federal officials gathered Saturday at a memorial service for Mankiller in Tahlequah (TAL'-ih-kwah), about 70 miles east of Tulsa. Mankiller led the Cherokee Nation from December 1985 until 1995.

She died Tuesday at age 64 after a bout with pancreatic cancer.

The nation's principal Chief Chad Smith describes Mankiller as a patriot. He says "her strength was absolute humility" and "that humility made her approachable rather than aloof ... and made her lead rather than follow."