Bellzona's Picture Book
Chilocco - Otilia
Haydee (Tillie) Hernandez
May 28, 1925 Daughter of Elizabeth and Enrique Emilio (Henry) Hernandez.
She died January 1, 1994 at St. Joseph's Medical in Ponca City, Oklahoma,
five A.M. She was sixty- eight years old. She is buried at the I.O.O.F
cemetery, Catholic section, at Ponca City.
Tillie was the youngest of three children.
Her brother Francis Vincent Hernandez was born July 18, 1920. He died
February 2, 1989. Her other brother, Daniel B. Hernandez was born March
18, 1917, Died
September 10, 1998. Tillie's sister, Velma
Louise Pensoneau Jones and brother Edward Richard Pensoneau were children
of Narcisse and Elizabeth Pensoneau. Ed was born August 4, 1910. Velma was
born January 15, 1913. Tillie served with the Bureau of Indian Affair as
Administrative Officer at Chilocco Indian School. Upon its closing she
served three years before retirement in the capacity of program analyst at
the Bureau in Anadarko, Oklahoma. She retired from there in 1983.
Tillie served with the Bureau during the
historic closing of the century old boarding school of Chilocco. It was a
most difficult assignment since she was the chief administrator at the
time. There were families who had spent their lives at the school. Some of
these were descendants of others who had served before them. These
employees were in a time of change. Having to give up the beauty of the
surroundings as well as the ideals and goals for which the school stood
was traumatic for them. Tillie had to be responsible for carrying out the
smallest details even as to the destruction of heirloom looms which had
been tools for a part of the schools curriculum. These decisions were not
hers but she had to accept the responsibility of carrying out the orders
from her superiors. It was most damaging to her and it destroyed her
Some compared the closing of the school to
the end of a dynasty and in effect it was. The man who was superintendent
of the school saw to it's success. Mr. L.E. Correll was said to be
responsible for the superior education given to the Native American. Some
years there were as many as a thousand students on campus and Mr. Correll
could call any one of them by name personally. Without his guidance and
direction after his death the school began to slip into failure. Mr.
Correll was not only a wise educator but a most astute businessman. His
keen political maneuvering
kept a good press for the school also. The
contributions made to the area raised many peoples life style and made
living easier. The students educated there are to this day serving in
every phase of public lives, contributing and producing children who are
also workers for peaceful, clean communities. With this kind of an order
being ended one can see why Tillie's job required her total dedication and
also how it was so very stressful for her.
The genealogy of the Hernandez family is
not complete. They come from a very old line. OTILIA, (Tillie) was the end
of a line from that old family originally from Spain. Her father
corresponded with his family in Mexico with flowing elegant penmanship.
There is a brother of Tillie's father, Henrique, (Henry). The brother
Jesus Hernandez lives in Mission, Texas and owns or owned a citrus
plantation. There are pictures of airplanes spraying their crops. Jesus
has a family there and is around ninety some years. Enrique had a brother,
Abraham, who was killed here in Oklahoma sometime around the turn of the
century. Shaw-Bah-Kay-Wah-They was the Ponca name given to OTILIA. Her
Spanish name, "OTILIA," is the name of a beautiful flower of
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