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HOUSTON Longtime owner of the NFL Tennessee Titans, Kenneth Stanley “Bud” Adams passed was early Monday in Houston, Texas. Mr. Adams was a tribal citizen of the Cherokee Nation of Oklahoma. He was 90.
Born in Bartlesville, Oklahoma, he was a member of the Cherokee Nation through his mother’s side of his family. His uncle, William Keeler, was appointed chief of the Cherokee Nation by President Harry Truman in 1949. Keeler served as chief until 1971 when the office of chief was appointed by the president of the United States. Keeler was elected chief after the Cherokee Nation’s constitution changed to allow for elections. He served until 1975.
Adams served in the US Navy during World War II in the Pacific Theater. Soon after returning the United States, he visited Houston, Texas and decided to live there.
During the course of several decades, Adams become a very successful businessman. His personal fortunate included oil and sports teams, including the Tennessee Titans.
On Monday, Cherokee Nation Principal Chief Bill John Baker released the following statement regarding “Bud” Adams’ death:
”With the passing of K. S. "Bud" Adams, Cherokee Nation has lost one of its most prominent and beloved tribal citizens. Although probably best known as a successful businessman and owner of the Tennessee Titans NFL franchise, Adams was born right here in the Cherokee Nation in Bartlesville, Oklahoma, and never lost touch with his Cherokee heritage. People may be surprised to know that his Cherokee roots included his maternal uncle, W.W. Keeler, who served as Principal Chief of the Cherokee Nation for more than two decades.
Through the years Bud Adams was one of the Cherokee Heritage Center’s staunchest supporters, serving on its executive board and making generous contributions that established attractions such as the Adams Corner Rural Village in 1979 in honor of his mother, Blanch Keeler Adams. Endowments and continuing support from Adams have had a broad impact on Cherokees and other visitors to the Cherokee Heritage Center.
In 2000 he received the highest honor awarded by the Cherokee National Historical Society for his support and dedication to the preservation and promotion of Cherokee culture. A member of the “greatest generation,” we also recognize and honor his sacrifices as a veteran of World War II who fought to protect our freedoms, as so many Cherokee men of his generation did.
We will miss Bud Adams and offer our deepest condolences to his family.”
posted October 22, 2013 6:00 am edt