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Gene Vincent Dougherty

Thursday, June 30, 2022
Gene Vincent Dougherty

Gene Vincent Dougherty, 92, of Tonkawa, OK, passed away Monday, June 20, 2022, at his home surrounded by family. Gene was born in Hinton, OK, not far from the Dougherty family homestead. He is the last remaining Dougherty of his generation of 53 cousins. He contracted polio as a toddler, but despite his health issues - or maybe because of them - he developed an interest and skill in art at an early age. “I can’t remember ever wanting to do anything else. I recall when I was about six years old seeing a flooded farm covered with flocks of ducks and waterfowl…I went home and drew ducks for a year”.

His family moved to Oklahoma City where he started elementary at the Willard School, and then continued to Putnam City schools. He was known as the “boy of art and wit” in high school. After high school he worked his way through college as a taxidermist for Herbert Rogers. He earned his bachelor’s degree in education from Central State University, now UCO, and his master’s degree in secondary art education from Oklahoma State University. He met Dee in Sand Springs, where he was teaching high school art classes. They married in 1960 and later moved to Oklahoma City where he taught at Choctaw High School. In 1965 the Dougherty family moved to Tonkawa to start a new position as an artist-in-residence at Northern Oklahoma College and remained until his retirement in 1989. He was employed by then-president Dr. V.R. Easterling, who was looking for an art instructor and had heard of Dougherty from mutual friends but began his NOC career under Dr. Edwin E. Vineyard. Gene taught watercolor and oil painting, drawing, two-dimensional and three-dimensional design, sculpture, woodcarving, art appreciation and art for elementary education majors while continuing to develop his own style, technique, and presentation for his personal work.

Several of his paintings of military subjects have hung in the Senate Office Building and one is in the Pentagon in Washington, D.C. Another, pertaining to the Air Force campaign in the South Pacific, hangs in the Air Force Academy in Colorado Springs. He created a large mural for the Ponca City Post Office.

He has earned numerous awards for his works, including the Oklahoma Governor Arts Award. His works have been shown in Taos, Denver, Santa Fe, Oklahoma City, Cheyenne and Cody, Wyoming, and Lawton, and he is represented in the Philbrook Museum in Tulsa. Currently he has works in the Daffodil Hill gallery in Bethany.

He was preceded in death by his wife, Delores “Dee” (Quisenberry); parents John Dougherty and Louise (Nowka), brother Jack and sisters Eleanor Hill and Bernice Brown. Gene is survived by his children, Vince, and wife Paula of Norman, OK; Michael, and wife Katie of Edmond, OK; Donna (Meyers) Martin, and husband Phil of San Francisco, CA; Ken Meyers and wife Pat of Ardmore, OK; grandchildren Sarah, Nick, and Brad Martin; David Meyers; Mack and Luke Dougherty.

Recitation of the Rosary was held at 10:00 a.m. Saturday, June 25, 2022, with Mass following at 10:30 a m, both at St Joseph Catholic Church, 320 West North, Tonkawa, OK. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to NOC Gene Dougherty Scholarship Fund, Hospice of North Central Oklahoma in Ponca City and St Joseph Catholic Church in Tonkawa.

A memorial service to celebrate his life is planned in early August. Interment of his ashes will take place at Chapel Hill Memorial Gardens Cemetery in Oklahoma City, where he will be laid to rest with his parents. Arrangements are under the direction of Trout Funeral Home & Cremation Service of Tonkawa, 505 Thunderbird Rd, Tonkawa, OK 74653.