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GR Carter
Posted on Jan 15, 2020
Empty Saddles

George Robert Carter May 17th 1942 – January 8, 2020



George Robert Carter of Nowata, OK passed away peacefully, but unexpectedly in his sleep at home on Jan 8th 2020 at the age of 77.  He was born may 17th 1942 in Pawhuska to Alva (Red) Carter and Sophia Carter (Young).  He was raised in the Osage Indian Village of Pawhuska where he, his two younger brothers and their friends played cowboys & Indians endlessly.  It was his favorite game because he could relate to both sides.  He went to grade school at the old Indian Camp school and was proud to be a Warrior.  As a youngster he loved to help his father Red and his two uncles, Charlie and Barton, work cattle, break colts, or anything else ranch related, so he could improve his roping skills.  He fell in love with roping and the cowboy way of life.  He roped competitively in single steer roping and team roping until he could no longer get on a horse at the age of 70.

He graduated Pawhuska High School in 1960 and couldn’t wait  for the next  big adventure.  George & his best friend John Miller were headed to Modesto, CA to work on John’s uncle Ben Johnson’s ranch and attend school at Modesto Junior College where they planned to college rodeo and have all the fun they could.  The two of them somehow made it 1700 miles in a bad car with very little money.  He got an associate’s degree from Modesto Junior College and made many new cowboy friends while there.  He continued his college education closer to home at Oklahoma State University, graduating in 1965 with a degree in Animal Husbandry. 

He married his high school sweetheart Frankie Mae Keigley in 1963, a union that lasted 34 years and produced three children, Trini, GR Jr, and Trona.   After college, he went to work in the pipeline business, where he traveled the country and learned how to weld.   He started Carter Construction in 1970 and continued the business until he passed.  He specialized in steel construction ( shops, barns, and pipe fencing)  He gave many local young men their first job and several credit him for teaching them how to weld and how to work.  

He continued to rodeo in the 1970’s and 1980’s in the PRCA and eventually in the Senior Steer Ropers Association and saw to it his children got to participate in about any activity they wanted to.  He ran a few cows, raised a few horses, and started training a few racehorses when his kids got old enough to help.  His son, GR Carter Jr. was able to get started on a successful career as a racehorse jockey by getting on horses trained by George.   He dabbled in the racehorse business the rest of his life.  He bred a few thoroughbreds and quarter horses each year.  The best horse he raised and the family favorite was a 3 times stakes winner and earner of $165,000, Painted Josy.  GR Jr rode “Josy” to most of his wins.  George loved the race horse business and was the #1 fan of GR during  his career in the saddle.

He met Linda Partain through a steer roping friend of his and they were married the last 20 years of his life.  Linda has 2 children, 2 grandchildren, and 3 great grandchildren that became a big part of his life.   He & Linda moved to Nowata, OK and lived on their Carter ranch to be closer to her family. 

George loved life, all his family, his friends, and was thankful for all his many employees over the years. He was a member of the Osage Tribe and served 2 terms on the Minerals Council  in the 1990’s.  He was a PRCA gold card member and member of many roping associations including the Osage Steer Roping club, Senior Steer Roping Association, USTRC, and the World Series of Team Roping. His favorite roping memory was winning the Southwest Regional Finals in 2005 with his son GR Jr. Even though they finished roping at midnight, he had to call and wake up his friends to tell them all how excited he was.  He was also a member of the AQHA, OQHRA, and Osage County Cattleman’s Association.  George was also a founding member of the Pawhuska Elks Lodge.


He was preceded in death by his parents, Sophia and Alva (Red) Carter.

He is survived by his wife Linda of the home, his two brothers Nelson Carter of Midwest City, OK and Dean Carter of Pawhuska,  his children Trini Haddon (Randy) of Pawhuska, GR Carter Jr ( Shaena) of Oklahoma City, Ok, Trona Carter of Pawhuska, Chris Brown of Nowata, and John Partain (Nancy) of Nowata, OK.  Grandchildren: Hunter Haddon, Zach Walls, Tatum Tisdale, Jessica Farrow (Thomas),  and Justin Partain (Kaylee).  Great Grandchildren: Scarlett Walls, Rowdy and Rylan Farrow, and Kaydence Partain


Funeral Service were held Monday January 13, 2020  at the Wakon Iron Hall in Pawhuska Indian Camp. In his honor, memorial contributions can be made to the Permanently Disabled Jockeys Fund and will be appreciated.

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