Duane and his dear wife Donna spent many happy summers at Sandy’s Resort, away from the Tempe, Arizona heat. When the mercury hit 100 degrees they would head north where the trout were calling! Almost every day, rain or shine they would fish the waters of Francois Lake. The Hart family were honorary locals and considered themselves blessed to have many northern friends and to share their faith, fellowship and fishing knowledge with them.
His life stories would make a great novel! From his childhood adventures in Safford, Arizona to his stint in the Marines, being a motorcycle policeman in Tucson, and developing successful concrete and real estate ventures in California – Duane was not afraid to take on challenges, especially with Donna at his side. In his retirement he became an expert jewelry maker and gemcutter, and later spent many happy hours creating wooden art, especially the wooden hearts he shared freely. For their whole lives, Duane and Donna were generous supporters of their communities and people in need.
Duane will always be remembered for his great sense of humor, generosity, curiosity and positive attitude toward life. He was devoted to his family and friends, and to sincere faith in his beliefs. His deep love for Donna was inspirational and he was by her side every day through her struggles with dementia and other health issues. Duane lost Donna in 2008, leaving a sadness that Duane knew would pass when they were reunited.
Duane will be dearly missed by all of his northern friends but remembered fondly when Duane’s favorite “flat-bottomed clouds” drift across the skies and the trout dance on the clear waters of Francois Lake. We can picture Duane and Donna in their Airstream motor home on their favorite spot, sitting down for a breakfast of biscuits and smoked trout gravy “so good it makes your eyes light up and your tummy say ‘Howdy!'”