Gloria Sue Baptiste, 71, passed away on Wednesday, Dec. 26, 2012, at Ardmore, Okla. Funeral services will be held at 10 a.m., Monday, Dec. 31, 2012, in The Chapel at Griffin~Hillcrest with Reverend Ed Lee and Reverend Randy Baptiste officiating. Gloria's daughters and Native Praise will provide the music for the service. Interment to follow in Hickory Cemetery, Carter County, Okla.
Gloria was born on April 12, 1941, to Jasper Ensharkey and Elsie (Lewis) Ensharkey at Ardmore, Okla. She married Lonzo Baptiste on Aug. 12, 1959.
An Ardmore native, Gloria grew up going to McAlister Church in Overbrook and is a graduate of Dickson High School. She worked as a Home Health Nurse throughout the Tulsa area. Gloria received her Associate's Degree from Tulsa Junior College. She was a member of Bowen Baptist Church in Tulsa for 40 years where she was the director of the Oklahoma Indian Women's Conference for six years and the church clerk for ten years. Gloria and Lonzo promoted Southern Gospel Music and traveled with their family music group, the Baptiste Family, for many years. In 2005, the family moved to Ardmore and moved their church membership to Northeast Baptist Church. She also received cer tification to teach the Chickasaw language. She was a member of Native Praise, traveling to Washington, DC, to sing at the White House. Gloria was a loving mother, grandmother, and greatgrandmother. She loved her animals.
She was preceded in death by her parents, husband Lonzo Baptiste, son-in-law Pedro Garcia, and two daughters; Leona Carol and Victoria Baptiste.
Gloria is survived by one son, William Victor Baptiste, of Ardmore Okla., three daughters; Luleda Rose West and husband, Dana, of Concho, Okla., Tracy Janine Garcia of Ardmore, Okla., and Jo Anna Gail Cantley and husband, Ambus, of Ardmore, Okla. Eleven grandchildren, seven great-grandchildren, and half-sister, Serena Wilmond.
Pallbearers will be Gloria's grandsons. Her sons-in-law will serve as Honorary Bearers.
A prayer service will be held from 6 to 8 p.m., on today at Griffin~Hillcrest, Ardmore, Okla.