, Muskogee, OK

Local News

August 20, 2012

Native artist Rector dies after turning 77

— Native American artist Joe A. Rector Sr. died Sunday with his family at his side in Destin, Fla. He was 77.

Rector lived most of his life in Muskogee and always considered it his home, his son Joe A. Rector Jr. wrote in an email to the Phoenix.

Rector celebrated his birthday Aug. 12 with family in Florida.

According to the Rector Art Co. website, Rector started drawing at about age 5. He began by looking at comic-book characters and drawing them.

As a teenager, he began to study all forms and styles of artwork. Western art was his favorite.

Rector also was a champion weightlifter.

“He had quite a history in Muskogee, from world champion weightlifter, to school teacher, musician, to world renown artist,” the younger Rector wrote. “Muskogee was always home to him.”

Funeral services are pending. A service in Muskogee is planned, the son wrote.

Reach Mike Carrels at (918) 684-2922 or

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