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Donald Ray Duke, 82, of Rising Star passed away peacefully at his home surrounded by his family Monday, Jan. 7, 2013. Funeral services will be held at 2 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 10, 2013, at Higginbotham Funeral Home in Cross Plains with Dwaine Clower officiating and Charles Chesshir assisting. Burial will follow in the Liberty Cemetery in Eastland County. Visitation will be held at the funeral home from 5:30 p.m. until 7 p.m. Wednesday, Jan. 9, 2013.
Donations may be made to the CP EMS, CP Fire Department, P.O. Box 699, Cross Plains, TX 76443; or Lighthouse Hospice, 957 E. Main, Eastland, TX 76448.
He was born to John and Bertha (Phillips) Duke at Sabanno, Texas, on Aug. 1, 1930. He married Doris Hodnett on Oct. 11, 1947, in Sabanno.
In 1949 he moved to Corpus Christi, where he went to plumbing school. In 1950 they moved to Big Spring and went to work for Dryer Plumbing. Then, in 1951, they went to work for Cosden Oil and Chemical. In 1974 they relocated to his farm between Rising Star and Cross Plains, where he farmed, ran a dairy and ran a plumbing and electrical company until declining health caused him to retire.
Ordained as a deacon in 1951 at Hillcrest Baptist Church, he surrendered to preach in 1994, where he served as pastor for Cornerstone Church in Cross Plains, as well as Mitchell, Breckenridge, then to Pioneer where he served until his health caused him to retire completely.
Survivors include his wife of 65 years, Doris; son, Michael Ray Duke; daughters, Donna Merrick and husband Teddy and Teresa Enfield, all of Weatherford; grandchildren, Krystal Barrett and husband Tyson of Brock, Jeanie Walker and husband John T, (Rusty) John Russel Duke and wife Rochelle of Fort Worth and Kacie Edwards and husband Bubba of Borden County, Texas; great-grandchildren, Brylan and Dylan Barrett of Brock, Carson, Prestie and Lanie Walker of Brock, Walker and J.D. of Fort Worth and Callie and Trey Edwards of Fort Worth; as well as many cousins, nieces, nephews and a host of friends; and Robert Hodnett and wife Liz of San Antonio.
He was preceded in death by his parents; brothers, Wesley Duke and (Willie) William Duke; sister, Rosa Gage; and two infants.