Mrs. Darlene French Defoe’s address changed from Earth to Heaven on March 29, 2021 after a short period of declining health. God gave Darlene 72 years on this earth. She is proceeded in death by her husband, Richard Defoe, Chippewa Tribe from Red Lake, Minn.; parents, Mrs. Dinah C. French and Mr. Ned Hill; grandparents, Mr. Ossie Crowe and Mrs. Martha Toineeta Crowe, Mr. Levi Hill and Mrs. Laura Jane Wolfe Hill; sister, Maude E. French Paul; brothers, Eugene Nicholas (Nick) French, Dale Morgan French, Jonathan Lee French, and Larry Armachain Sr.; and brother-in-law, Milburn H. Roach.
Surviving are sisters, Susannah French Roach of Cache, Okla., Roberta Ann French of Whittier, and Deborah Armachain Murphy of Tennessee; sister-in-law, Nora Watford French, of Cherokee; step-daughter, Ricci Defoe May of Winnebago, Neb.; brothers, Eugene M. French of Tallahoma, Tenn. and Ned Armachain of Cherokee; brother-in-law, Wilbur Paul of Cherokee; numerous special nieces, nephews and cousins; special Fort Sill Indian School Alummi friends, Phyllis Hunter, Hazel Paul, and Beverly Wilson; and special friend, Randall Lighthorse.
Darlene grew up in Cherokee until leaving to go to Fort Sill Indian School, Lawton, Okla. when entering eighth grade. She graduated from Fort Sill Indian School and attended Haskell Institute in Lawrence, Kan. After graduating from Haskell Institute, she was employed by the Indian Health Service, Headquarters Office, located in Rockville, Md. for 15 years.
After marriage, Darlene and Richard moved back to Cherokee. She was employed by Tukasegee Mills and the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians (EBCI). Her latest position was with the EBCI Police Department, Office of Investigations, until retirement.
Darlene enjoyed helping people and held past memberships and positions in the North American Indian Women’s Association, Cherokee Baptist Women’s Auxiliary, and the Fort Sill Indian School Alumni Association.
Darlene was a member of the Yellow Hill Baptist Church. In her latter years of life, she was a faithful attendee of the Big Cove Pentecostal Holiness Church. She loved going to church and worshipping her Savior Jesus Christ. She was an intercessory prayer warrior and a witness for Jesus Christ.
Officiating services is Pastor Roberta Ann French, Big Cove Pentecostal Holiness Church, Cherokee. Pallbearers are family and friends.
Homegoing Services will be held Tuesday, April 6 with a 11 a.m. to 12 noon viewing, 12 p.m. to 1 p.m. services. Interment will be in French Family Cemetery, Lambert Branch Road, Cherokee.
Crisp Funeral Home Services in Bryson City, North Carolina is assisting family with the services.
Masks and social distancing is requested.