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People Gather to Continue Quanah Parker's Legacy

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CACHE, Okla._People from all over the country came together in Cache to celebrate and honor Quanah Parker's legacy.

He was the last chief of the Comanche people, who died in 1911. A number of first-timers from as far away as Arizona came to Cache to take part in the two-day reunion. And today, the family and visitors toured the Star House, the home of Quanah Parker.

The Star House sits in the remains of Eagle Park on the outskirts of Cache, and it helps tell the story of Quanah Parker. For his great granddaughter, the structure is a personal keepsake. She has been a part of the house's upkeep for most of her life. Constructed in 1890, the house was the center of Comanche culture drawing visitors from around the world in its heyday. And even thought the structure is deteriorating, his legacy lives on when you step inside.

"Everyone is welcome in this house, and I think that is why it feels so warm," said Ardith Parker-Liming.

She is the great granddaughter of Quanah Parker. Her grandfather was raised in Star House, and to this day she still feels the warmth of Parker's being when she walks through the door.

"There is just a warm feeling about it because he sat at that table at the end. He ruled the house, and respected all his wives. He was proud of all his children, and we still carry on that part, as far as my family goes," said Parker-Liming.

Quanah Parker began a legacy that has spread from one generation to the next within the walls of his home.

"He taught his children all the way down to us, and set a good example," said Parker-Liming.

She said that Quanah Parker was never willing to settle. He believed there were always greater things to achieve in the future.

"He was always looked ahead, and knew that there was another door that would open," said Parker-Liming.

That is why this annual reunion is so important. On a simple tour through the house, people of all ages can learn Quanah Parker's story-- a story of a man his descendants say never abandoned where he came from.

"He never forgot his tradition. He wanted to learn the white man's ways, as well as he did his own. So that tells us that we can all get along and keep our traditions and culture. And also learn someone else's ways," said Parker-Liming.

The Star House is available for public tours throughout the year from The Trading Post in Cache.

Quanah Parker Family Reunion events continue Saturday morning with a cedar memorial ceremony at Parker's burial site at the Fort Sill Cemetery at 10 a.m. and a powwow Saturday at 7 p.m. at the Cache Multipurpose Building.

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