December 8, 2013 in Obituaries

Obituary: Sanders, Duane V.

 


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SANDERS, Duane V. of Spokane, Washington, passed away Wednesday, December 4, 2013 at the age of 82. Duane was born in Kamiah, Idaho January 30, 1931. He was preceded in death by his twin brothers, Ron (1953) and Don (1959). He is survived by his sons, Ron and Allan; his daughter, Theresa; his half-brother, Bob; his ex-wife, Rose Marie; his grandchildren, Jennifer, Jeff and Charlie; and one great-grandson, Vash. Duane and his brothers resided at the Hutton Settlement during WWII. Duane had many fond memories of life with his brothers at the Settlement. He would drive by it with his children over the years and recount stories of his life there. After the war he spent the remainder of his childhood on the Orchard Prairie working on the family farm. His summers were spent with his brothers at their grandparents’ ranch outside Northport, Washington and at their homestead on the Little Pend Oreille Lakes, Northeast of Colville, Washington. Lake Leo is named after his grandfather who surveyed the area at the turn of the last century. Duane was a veteran of General MacArthur’s Honor Guard in Japan and a combat veteran of the Korean War where he was wounded twice in battle. His experiences in Japan and Korea left an indelible mark on his life which continued to gain in significance as he aged. He was well acquainted with General MacArthur and his wife and always appreciated their many kindnesses towards him. He remained an active member of the MacArthur’s Honor Guard Society until his death. In seeing reports of PTSD in returning veterans of the Iraq and Afghanistan Wars he commented: “It’s not the guys with PTSD that you need to worry about; there is something wrong with a man who has seen combat and doesn’t have a touch of PTSD”. And he did have a touch. Duane was a mechanical engineer, working for Otis Elevator in the early years and Systematic Parking with his brother, Don, following that. The remainder of his career was spent designing equipment and manufacturing plants for the automated packaging industry. He often commented: “With every major project I’ve ever taken on, I was always in over my head”, yet he was never afraid to take on a project of any size or complexity. He always knew that he’d find a way to get the job done. Duane spent the last 10 years of his life in residence at his eldest son’s house sitting at his original drawing board, smoking cigars, drinking beer, drawing up new designs, reading books, listening to the radio and regaling his children and grandchildren with stories from his life. Duane lived a long, rich, eventful life and he will be greatly missed. The world will be a less colorful place without him. Duane will be buried with military honors at a private ceremony. A memorial will be held to honor Duane’s life on Saturday December 14th at his son’s house. Please call Ron at 926-7371 for details.


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