Duane Paul Smith, 85, of Wheelock, Vt., passed away Friday, Feb. 28, 2020 at NVRH, after a battle with pancreatic cancer, surrounded by his loving family.
Duane was born on July 21, 1934 to Cecil and Doris (Hunt) Smith in Wheelock; one of 11 children. He married Joan Ingalls on June 18, 1956. They were married nearly 64 years. In August of 1958, they had a son, Kerry Smith, of Wheelock.
His limited education of only eight years did not deter him from accomplishing many goals in his life, of which he was very proud. Duane retired from Vt. American Corp. (VTD) after twenty eight years of service as General Plant Manager. He was a logger in his younger years, working alongside his father and brothers. He was a carpenter for M.P. Ronan Co. before entering the service and again after returning. He served his country from 1954-1957.
Duane was proud that he built his own home, as well as working alongside his son building his. He loved his hunting dogs, breeding and raising his own pack and training them. He traveled many, many miles behind them on bear and bobcats. He also did a lot of trapping of beaver for years. He worked with the state biologists’ project tagging bears. He was also one of the original organizers of the “Cat and Coon Club” in Lyndonville. Duane loved to write and wrote articles for several hunting magazines for several years. He had a way with words.
He family was always a main priority for Duane. His grandson, Damon Smith, of Wheelock, was very special to him. They hunted together since Damon was big enough to go. He took Damon with him to many AKC events.
Duane is survived by his wife, Joan, a son, Kerry, two grandchildren, Damon and his wife Hilairy (of Wheelock) and Morgan Smith of Lyndonville. His three great-grandchildren, Cecilia, Nash and Annabella. Also four brothers, David, Robert, Gaylon and Jack (Preston) Smith, all of Wheelock. His four sisters, Lorraine Poulin and Donna Camber of Wheelock, Gayle Gauthier of St. Johnsbury and Jennie Edmunds of Lyndonville. He also has many extended family. He was pre-deceased by his parents, a grandson Josh and his brothers Delford and 1996 and Bradley in 2004.
A memorial service is being planned in the spring at the Sulphur Spring Cemetery in Wheelock, with a Celebration of Life to follow. More details will be available at a later time.
Thank you to Caledonia County Hospice and NVRH for exceptional care, all of their help, kindness and compassion.