Michael Joe Perry Jr.
”1980 - 2023”

    Michael Joe Perry Jr.

    If I Should Die Before the Rest of you
    If I should die before the rest of you
    Break not a flower nor inscribe a stone
    Nor, when I’m gone, speak in a Sunday voice,
    But be the usual selves that I have known.
    Weep if you must
    Parting is hell.
    But life goes on.
    So sing as well.
      Joyce Grenfell

      Michael Joe Perry Jr., departed this life on August 8, 2023. “Chumbo” or “Chum”, as he was lovingly known, left this earth to join his Lord and Savior from the place he most loved, the Stomp Grounds during Greencorn.
      Chumbo was born in the Los Angeles, California area on February 24, 1980 to his parents, Michael Joe Perry, Sr., and Betty Mae Yazzie Perry. They moved their family to the Miami and Commerce, Oklahoma area when Chum was just four years old. He was big brother to Jacob Harold Perry and “Sister” Tahnee Skye Perry. His parents loved their kids dearly. He is survived by sisters Tahnee and Iris Perry of Grove and Commerce respectively. He is also survived by many aunts, uncles, cousins, nieces and nephews.
      Chum attended and graduated from Commerce High School in 1999. He played football while there and throughout his life was a long-time Sooner fan. He had worked at J&M Farms. Chum was always willing to lend a hand to his family when they needed help. Some say the eyes are the portal to the soul. That was certainly true of Chumbo. He had kind eyes and a giving heart.
      Chum lost his mom, Betty, to cancer when he was only 13 years old. He missed her so. He lost his dad, Mike, in 2009 and his little brother, Jake, in 2011. Chumbo’s Uncle Eric Yazzie, who was more of a big brother to him, left this world in 2019. Hard losses and loved ones, we are sure, he rejoiced in seeing again.
      Michael was proud to be a member of the Seneca-Cayuga Nation, Navajo Nation and Chickasaw Nation. As was mentioned, he most loved being at Greencorn where giving thanks to the Creator and spending time with family and friends are at the core of the Tribe’s ceremonies and beliefs. Chum grew up knowing his Jesus and was a member of New Beginnings Life Church in Miami.
      Although Chum suffered great loss throughout his young life, those of us who knew and loved him take comfort in our certainty that he has found his peace. Without a doubt, he was greeted not only by his mom and dad and brother and uncle, but grandparents Bill and Joyce Whitecrow Perry and Fred and Betty Yazzie, and other loved ones too numerous to mention. But Eric is probably playing him some drum songs while he catches up with Kyle over a cup of coffee, all the while laughing and hugging his parents.
      Our Chum will lay in repose at the Seneca-Cayuga Community Building by the Ceremonial Grounds and will be laid to rest among family at the Friends Council House Cemetery on Friday, August 11th at 2:00 pm. Officiant will be Rev. John Jennings and Native American Rites will be conducted by Randy White. Pallbearers will be Noah Yazzie, JDean Yazzie, Jason Perry, Justin Raishart, Ryan Perry and Casey Perry. Family and friends are invited to come to the wake, share, laugh and cry with us as we celebrate Chum’s life.
      Funeral services are under the direction of Paul Thomas Funeral Home and Cremation Service of Miami, Oklahoma.
      Resource: www.paulthomasfuneralhomes.com

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