Reverend Buddy Dee Monahan, age 52, of Albuquerque, NM, passed away on March 27, 2018 in Odessa, TX.
Buddy was born in Talihina, OK, to Irvin Monahan and Theda Tohnika on December 3, 1965. He graduated from Eagletown High School, Eagletown, OK, in 1984. He married Dyanna Krissman on July 2, 1988 at the University of the Ozarks in Clarksville, AR. He graduated from The University of the Ozarks in 1988 and The University of Dubuque Theological Seminary in 1991. He worked as a Presbyterian Minister for the PC(USA) for 26 years. He served as Pastor for the Native American Ministry Project in Los Angeles, CA, Chaplain at Menaul School and Pastor of Westminster Presbyterian Church in Odessa, TX. Buddy also served on many national committees for the PC(USA) and as pulpit supply for local churches.
Buddy is survived by his wife Dyanna Krissman Monahan of Albuquerque, NM. His children, Jordyn, Brandyn and Ashdyn all of Albuquerque, NM. His brother Tony Monahan of Eagletown, OK. His stepparents Ellis and Audrey Jefferson of Pickens, OK, his Uncle and Aunt Gene and Alicia Wilson of Indiahoma, OK and numerous cousins and friends.
Memorials may be given to The Monahan Children’s Education Fund c/o The Synod of the Sun or The American Indian Youth Council c/o PC(USA).
Honoring Buddy Monahan, read at Buddy’s Albuquerque memorial service by Amanda Cheromiah ‘04
For decades Buddy led energizers. He loved them. He enjoyed watching us engage with one another and he saw thousands of times how energizers built the communities he loved so much.
Many of us here have been on a number of adventures with Buddy. Whether it was at Menaul, in the Presbyterian Church (USA), youth councils or many other realms, we all have stories of Buddy.
My fondest memories of Buddy was at Menaul, when I was a student there over 10 years ago.
While at Menaul, for three summers, a handful of other Native students and I traveled with Buddy to various tribal communities across the nation. One summer we traveled to southeastern Oklahoma to teach vacation bible school.
One afternoon we were in the backwoods taking a “shortcut” somewhere. Buddy knew this road very well. When we approached the road it was a gushing river. It didn’t look too bad though. Buddy asked us, “Should we go through?” My sister, Maredyth Cheromiah, Aaron Sims, Dana Lorenzo and I all smiled and said, “Yes!” So we ventured across the road full of water.
At one point our smiles became looks of terror and our joyous laughter was hushed by the water that started to quickly rise against Menaul School’s purple “Campbell’s Soup” van. Buddy was still smiling though, probably a nervous smile. His arms were shaking trying to position the tires in a more stable position because the van started to slowly slip towards a five foot drop-off. At some point we all started to pray that Buddy wouldn’t sink the van with us in it!
By that point our van stalled and we were terrified that we weren’t going to make it. Aaron started putting on his socks and Maredyth and Dana started gathering their backpacks and stuffed animals, getting ready to start swimming for their lives. Then by a miracle two fisherman appeared from nowhere and pushed Menaul’s purple “Campbell’s Soup” van across the river.
That was the day we survived one of Buddy’s adventures and we loved every bit of it.
Buddy raised up leaders and many of us here are the fruit of his labor.
The greatest gift that Buddy gave me was the truth. God’s truth. Buddy, being a servant of the Lord, ministered to me and sowed seeds in my heart about the high calling on my life. He taught me how to love myself and continually spoke words of life.
After I left Menaul for college, at the University of Arizona, those seeds bore fruit. I eventually gave my heart to the Lord and fully committed to serving Him. I became a Christian. That changed my life forever here on earth and in eternity.
We honor Buddy today by sharing stories of him. His legacy will carry on in each of our hearts and in the stories we will continue to share about him.
God is good, all the time! And all the time, God is good!
A Poem Written for Buddy by Carlos Contreras ‘02
You cannot change the laws of physics
Most of you won’t
We do –
Those of us who saw him on routine
Many of us knew he knew no routine
His life was anything but
From the good book
To the ball
To the track
To the classroom
And the dinner table
He oversaw them all –
Saw us grow into men and women
Saw us in the grocery store
Over time –
Over time, we often times forget folks
We go on with our lives and find time for that
And those who our respective lives created
About, Buddy –
He was exceptional.
He married my cousin and her husband
Christened another –
I am in tears and regret the fact that I didn’t act
Fast enough for him to bless the beautiful girl
My wife gave birth to.
Sometimes our universe births exceptional beings
This is one of those cases.
Buddy Monahan was a man among men
That realized he was more than a man –
I read the screen, cried
Sat in silence
Wiped my tears –
Read for class, because he would’ve told me to –
Messaged Mrs. Monahan because he told me to.
Wrote this poem
Because nobody told me to.
We remember you
And although we cannot change the laws of physics
We know that what comes up must come down
And so, you’re up there –
We’re down here – and we expect you now
To check on us.
That’s the law right.
Right now, I know not how to wrap my brain around
All of this – so I write
Because although I don’t pray, you’re the one person
Who got me to believe in the power of it all.
When we stop and realize this world is more powerful than us all –
Sometimes we need to also realize
In our lifetimes, we will be reminded about the fragility
Of life – how it breaks –
My heart is broken –
And as we piece this story together
Tell it to each other and remember.
I will always remember you –
The way it made us continue to believe.
You might be gone, Buddy –
But you will never leave.
Forever remembered, my friend.
Until we meet again.