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Duane E. Harper, 76

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Duane E. Harper, age 76, of Waucoma, passed away on Wednesday, Aug. 17, 2022,
with his wife by his side at Country Winds Manor in Cresco.

A memorial service will be held at 10:30 am on Saturday, Aug. 27, 2022, at St. John’s Lutheran Church in Stapleton, with Pastor Laurie Ludin-Nelson officiating the service. 

Burial will follow at St. John’s Cemetery at Stapleton.

There will be a one-hour visitation at the church prior to the memorial service on Saturday, Aug. 27, 2022. 

Online condolences may be left at Memorials may be made to St. Jude’s Children’s Hospital.

Duane Eugene was born May 12, 1946, the son of Eldon and Fern (Folkerts) Harper in Hoisington, Kansas. He was raised on the Harper Family Century farm in Albert, Kansas. Duane0 attended school and graduated from Otis High School. 

After completing his education, Duane attended Fort Hays State University where he earned his master’s degrees in business and accounting. 

In 1968, Duane enlisted in the United States Army Reserves. He proudly served his country as a senior drill instructor and achieved the rank of sergeant first class prior to his honorable discharge in 1974. 

Upon his return home, Duane began his lifelong profession as an educator as he taught his passion of business. 

In 1986, through a chance meeting, Duane bumped into a young, Charleen Dudley. The couple became friends and were united in marriage on March 26, 1988. Duane lovingly welcomed Charleen’s children, Elizabeth and Christopher. Together the family welcomed daughters  Victoria, Meredith and Monica. 

The family has lived in Kansas and Texas and has called Iowa, “home,” since 2000 when he accepted a job at Upper Iowa University until his retirement in 2010.

When Duane wasn’t sharing his passion in the classroom, he was eager to share his love of collectable cars and tractors with his family and friends. 

Duane was also a seasoned distance runner logging up to 16 miles per day until he was 50 years of age when his health no longer allowed him to run. He went on to coach his children in cross country and track. He could often be found at local cross country events. 

Duane was also a proud cancer survivor, fighting prostate and pancreatic cancers. His family was his pride and joy and loved every moment shared with his wife, children and grandchildren. 

He’s been a lifelong Lutheran who was always active in his church.

Those left to cherish Duane’s memories are his wife, Charleen Harper of Waucoma; his children, Elizabeth Peterson of Norman, Oklahoma, Christopher (Justin Jensen) Dudley of Independence, Missouri, Victoria (Marshall) Halverson of Altoona, Meredith (Layne) Huber of Algona, and Monica (Adam) Schmitt of West Union; eight grandchildren; and his extended family in Kansas.

He was preceded in death by his parent, Eldon (Fern) Harper; his siblings, Dennis Harper and Dixie Stein.

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