David Hiram Drake was born on March 7, 1932 and crossed over to “The Happy Hunting Grounds” on March 5, 2022. He had a long and wonderful life of almost 90 years. His lifelong best friend, Ranney Beck (Bronson’s Double) left us on the same day. They were both “Tricksters” in their younger years at Somes Bar and Orleans. Our Karuk Tribe would call them “Pihneefichs” (coyotes).

Dave served in the Korean Conflict as a military policeman in 1955-56. He was a bartender for many years in Eureka, Willow Creek and Los Angeles. He also worked in the local sawmills. He had an Alaskan sawmill he used for many years milling lumber.

Dave married his first wife, Bonnie Rails, a beautiful Karuk Indian woman, and had one son — David Drake, the Karate Expert. He and his children David, Robert, Michael and Gabrielle (Chickie) were National Karate Champions in 1988 until 1991.

Dave Drake married his second wife, Adrienne “Cuddles” Colegrove, the Hupa Medicine Woman. She also crossed to the other side on April 3, 2016. They lived together on the banks of the beautiful Trinity River, where Dave would sit and watch the salmon run up the river. Dave and Cuddles grew beautiful flowers and had so many family gatherings, weddings, funerals, etc. Dave’s brother-in-law, Dr. Doyle Bradshaw, could not believe he knew the names of all of his beautiful roses. Dave was as expert “Horticulturist”!

Dave was one of eight siblings: Zona Ferris, Betty Bacock, Helen Beck, Ella Benedict, Shirley Bates and Bev Drake-Bradshaw. Dave was about eight years old when his sister, Zona Ferris, told him to get out of the apple tree. He of course, didn’t listen to her. She threw an apple at him and knocked him out of the tree. He fell on the creek below and broke his arm. It wasn’t easy living with seven sisters, especially when they would curl his hair with a curling iron to try and make him look like a girl.

When Dave was a young child he ran from his mother Lonnie Drake and she out ran him as he tried to climb through the fence. He laughed so hard as she drug him back to the house and punished him. He could not believe she caught him. Work day was Saturday at the Drake home in Somes Bar — working, cleaning, etc. — however , Dave would always disappear. He would be found under a tree, reading a book .

Dave spent time camping in the Marble Mountains as a child. His father and mother packed President Hoover and the Stanford University group into the Hoover cabin. He was also very proud of his heritage to President Warren Harding, who had an extremely brilliant legal mind. Dave served on the Karuk Indian Council in his younger years. He dipped for salmon at the Ishi Pishi Falls to help feed the local natives from Ka’timIin (Somes Bar) and Panamniik (Orleans).

Dave was a very spiritual person and very much involved in the local Indian ceremonies. He made Indian drums, which he learned from his father-in-law, Frank Colegrove. Dave was an avid horseman and always had quarter horses. He was the grand marshall of the Hoopa Rodeo in 2007. One of his friends said “When I die and come back as an animal, I want to belong to Dave Drake. He treats his animals better than his friends.” Dave also loved spending his time in Reno, Nevada, Lucky Bear, Hoopa and Blue Lake Casinos.

Dave leaves behind his son David Drake, (Linda Rhodes); his sisters Betty Bacock, Shirley Bates and Bev Drake-Bradshaw; his grandchildren, David, Michael, Robert, and Gabrielle; his great-grandchildren Ashley, Qo:so:s, Xatimniim, Tanis, Carmen, Aryana, Kininden, David Drake the fifth, Witisu Schlueter, Robert Drake Jr., and Aislinn Drake. He also had nieces, nephews and cousins too numerous to mention.

The family of Dave Drake would like to thank his nieces Renee Ferris and Poppy George, and David and Linda for their help at this time of sorrow .

A celebration of life will be held when Covid-19 is over .

Pallbearers are: Joe LeMieux, Porty Blake, Robert Attebery, Tim Bussell, Brian Tripp and Walt Lara.


The obituary above was submitted by David Drake’s loved ones. The Lost Coast Outpost runs obituaries of Humboldt County residents at no charge. See guidelines here. Email news@lostcoastoutpost.com.