Obituary for Oliver Kenneth "OK" Walkingstick, Jr.
Oliver Kenneth Walkingstick, Jr.
Oliver Kenneth Walkingstick, Jr., 74, passed away on October 8 in St. Paul. Known by many in his family and friends as O.K. and ‘Stick’. He will be greatly missed by his wife of 15 years, Constance (Connie) Walkingstick Catlin; his son Todd (April); Granddaughters Amanda Fraser (Tyler), Stephanie Larson (Mike), Simone and Tatum; great grandsons Cole and Matthew; sister-in-law Jeannie Walkingstick, niece Jill Hennig; nephews Scott (Sara) and Eric Walkingstick; cousins Ben T. Walkingstick (Bonnie), Nancy Baun and Beth Kromer, Connie’s family who all enjoyed a special relationship with him, many special friends and his dog Sofie. He was preceded in death by his father Oliver K. Walkingstick, Sr., mother Jeanne Kromer Walkingstick and brother Guy R. Walkingstick.
Oliver was born on July 27, 1943 in Washington, D.C. where his father, Oliver K. worked at the Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA). His father was the BIA administrator at several Native American reservations so the family moved a lot. Oliver, 9/32 Cherokee, was very proud of his Cherokee heritage. His grandfather, 100% Cherokee, was admitted to practice law before the U.S. Supreme Court and later before the Oklahoma Supreme Court, and was appointed by Congress to the Dawes Commission to record all Native Americans living in Indian territories. He was inducted into the National Hall of Fame for Famous American Indians. Another of Oliver’s ancestors crossed the Trail of Tears in 1838.
Oliver graduated from Aberdeen, South Dakota high school, attended Northern State College in Aberdeen and received a 3 year program certificate from the Graduate School of Retail Bank Management at the University of Virginia.
He had a 30 plus year career in the banking industry in St. Paul with First Trust and Midway National Bank; Port Arthur, Texas with Midland Bank and Casper, Wyoming with Wyoming National Bank. He last worked as senior vice president of the City and County Credit Union in St. Paul, retiring in 2006. He was involved with many community organizations and church activities, including Trinity Lone Oak Lutheran Church and School, MN Council of Churches task force on Native American Education, Ramsey County Private Industry Council, Junior Achievement and the Greater Minneapolis Council of Churches Division of Indian Work. After retirement, Oliver volunteered at the American Indian Magnet School and Willow Lane Elementary, both as a ‘reading buddy’. He went on church mission trips and was involved in several initiatives working with Native American populations. He was also a long time member of the Cannon Falls Golf Club.
Oliver was an avid golfer starting as a youth, participating on his high school golf team, and as an adult playing golf with his family and friends, often competing for an ice tea. Golf was the center of many vacations. He was a collector of golf hats and score cards, Native American objects, and turtles from the places he and Connie traveled. Throughout life he was a lover of his many dogs. Oliver loved to get in the car and go. He and Connie traveled to Wyoming and Colorado every year to visit and play golf with family and friends, he treasured these times to connect with his brother, Guy and family. Oliver and Connie wintered in Key Largo and Alabama, visited Hawaii and Alaska, where he lived as a youth for 3 years, and took several other driving trips across the U.S. At home, he valued time with his Church community, enjoyed morning coffee with friends, eating out, and walking with Connie and their dog. He loved to read and always had a book with him. In recent years he wore a Fitbit to track his steps and entered into friendly competition with family and friends. He loved keeping up with the news and politics, and texting with his son Todd, family and friends.
Oliver was a presence. He was a loving husband, kind and gentle, had a sense of humor and loved to tease, was outgoing and had an infectious laugh. He was modest and humble, down to earth, and thoughtful of others, asking questions about their lives, and was quietly encouraging and affirming to those close to him.
Oliver’s life will be celebrated on October 26, 2017 at the White Bear Lake United Methodist Church, 1851 Birch Street in White Bear Lake. An informal gathering of family and friends in the church fellowship hall will begin at 4:30 with refreshments followed by a Celebration of Life service in the sanctuary at 6:30 PM. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the White Bear Area Emergency Food Shelf, White Bear Lake United Methodist Church Memorial Fund or RAGOM (Retrieve a Golden of the Midwest – Dog Rescue). Arrangements by the Mueller Memorial in White Bear Lake.