Navajo Code Talker John C. Sells passes away at 92

WINDOW ROCK - Navajo Nation President Joe Shirley Jr. ordered flags on the Navajo Nation to fly at half-staff from Nov. 29 through Dec. 2 to honor Navajo Code Talker John C. Sells who died Nov. 22. He was 92.

"The late John C. Sells was a Navajo Code Talker who served the United States of American and the Navajo with courage, honor and distinction," President Shirley said in his proclamation.

In 2000, Mr. Sells was a recipient of the Congressional Silver Medal of Honor in recognition of his service as a Navajo Code Talker in the South Pacific during World War II.

Sells was born in Oak Springs on Feb. 15, 1915. He was Todacheeni, born for Tachini.

He worked as an X-ray technician, auto mechanic and heavy equipment operator at Navajo mines in Fruitland, N.M. He also owned and operated Plateau Gas Station in Shiprock.

He is survived by his children Joseph H. Sells and Erma J. Archuleta of Santa Fe, N.M., Trudy Erickson of Cortez, Colo., Christopher F. Sells of Montana, Alton D. Sells and Cheryl Davis Sells of Upper Fruitland, N.M.

He had 18 grandchildren and seven great-grandchildren.

Sells was preceded in death by his children's mother, Angela T. Sells. He is survived by his wife Alice S. Sells, and his children Joseph H. Sells and Erma J. Archuleta of Santa Fe, N.M., Trudy Erickson of Cortez, Colo., Christopher F. Sells of Montana, Alton D. Sells and Cheryl Davis Sells of Upper Fruitland, N.M.

His funeral was held Nov. 22 at Sacred Heart Catholic Church in Farmington, N.M.

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