DANVILLE — Carroll W. Dukes passed away Wednesday, Nov. 13, 2013, after his courageous 14-month battle with cancer.
Carroll was born Sept. 9, 1930, near Collison, Ill., the son of William J. and Lily (Hess) Dukes.
Carroll is survived by his wife, Mary (Denzer), whom he married on Jan. 1, 1982.
He also is survived by his sons, Steven W. Dukes (Irma) of San Antonio, Texas, and William B. Dukes of Orlando, Fla., as well as his stepchildren, Daryn Denzer (Julie) of Champaign, Daryl Denzer (Tonia) of LaPorte, Texas, and Shannon Schneider (Nick) of Mahomet. In addition, he is survived by nine grandchildren, 11 great-grandchildren and many nieces and nephews.
He was preceded in death by his parents; his first wife, Martha; his brother William J. Dukes, who was killed in WWII; and sisters Norma Miller, Mabre Seymour, and Laverna (June) LaMar.
Carroll graduated from Rossville High School in 1948 and entered the Air Force, where he spent 30 months stationed in Japan prior to his discharge in 1952. Upon discharge, he attended and graduated from Eastern Illinois University and continued on to Dickinson School of Law, an adjunct of Penn State University, where he graduated in 1958.
He became an associate with the law firm of Sebat, Swanson, Banks and Jones in Danville and shortly thereafter became a partner. In 1967, he opened CW Dukes law offices with an associate William Frivogel. In 1969, he was joined by John O’Rourke, and the firm of Dukes, O’Rourke, Stewart, Martin, and Ryan grew another eight attorneys. He retired in 2000 at age 70 from the firm currently known as Dukes, Ryan, Meyer, & Freed.
He was a life member of the American Legion Spears-Dukes post in Rossville, Ill. He also served on the Danville School Board from 1967-1970 and participated in various community functions over the years. He was a past member of St. James United Methodist Church where he served as chairman of the administrative board and executive committee. Carroll and Mary have been active members of the Second Church of Christ in Danville for the past 25 years.
He belonged to the following associations: American Bar, Illinois Bar, Illinois Defense Attorneys, American Trial Lawyers, and Vermilion County Bar (past president 1982).
His hobbies included golfing, fishing, reading and following Illini football and basketball as well as cheering on the Chicago Bears and Bulls. He will be deeply missed by his family and friends.
A celebration of Carroll’s life will begin at 10 a.m. Monday, Nov. 18, at Second Church of Christ in Danville. A visitation will take place 1-5 p.m. Sunday Nov. 17, at Sunset Funeral Home and Cremation Center, A Life Celebration Home, in Danville.
Please join the Dukes Family in sharing memories, pictures, and videos of Carroll’s life on his Tribute Wall at www.sunsetfuneralhome.com. Donations may be made to The Second Church of Christ Building Fund.