Virginia K. Duke

July 15, 1929July 17, 2021

Virginia Lee Klapper Duke passed away peacefully on Saturday, July 17, 2021 surrounded by loved ones. She was born, July 15, 1929 to Fred and Amelia Klapper in Coleman, Texas. The family moved to Hearne, Texas where Virginia attended public school and graduated from Hearne High School. She attended and graduated from the University of Texas, Austin with a Bachelors Degree in Education. She met and married the love of her life in, 1950, Bob Duke, honeymooned in Cuba, and then began an amazing 62 years of marriage. Left to cherish her memory are her daughter, Barbara Stryker and husband Michael, son Jim Duke and wife Tracey; her beloved grandchildren, Michelle Campbell and husband Paul, Shannon Hardin and husband Ryan, Wes Duke, Ashley Duke and Will Ferguson; and her precious great grandchildren, Troy and Virginia Lee Campbell and Regina Hardin; and her numerous cousins and special friends that made her life so joyous.

Virginia is preceded in death by her loving husband Robert (Bob) Duke, son, Bobby, parents, Fred and Amelia Klapper, and parent in-laws, James and Clara Duke.

Virginia was a wonderful, gracious lady with the sweetest and kindest spirit that will be greatly missed. We thank our heavenly Father for blessing our lives with Virginia as she was a loving and giving mother, trusted and loyal friend, and a faithful and devoted servant to Christ. The lives she touched, she made better. The many priceless gifts she gave included spreading her faith and love to many organizations. She was a member of Chi Omega Sorority, was one of the original mentors of the Garza Teen Parents program and was a mentor to AISD students at Barbara Jordan Elementary school from 1998-2002. She served as President of the Junior Helping Hand from 1975-1977, and Chairman of the Board of its successor, the Helping Hand Home for Children, from 1977-1981, and as a member of the Endowment and Plan Giving Committee, Virginia and Bob cherished dearly the Helping Hand Home for Children, and volunteered numerous hours on Saturday evenings reading to the children.

She also served on the Foundation Board of St. David’s Hospital from 1982-1992, was a member of the Austin Lawyers Auxiliary, where she served as president from 1969-1970, and served on the Ballet Austin Board in 1988. Virginia was, Lay Leader of Tarrytown United Methodist Church in 1991, and enjoyed teaching Sunday School and Vacation Bible School, as well as a mentor to many in confirmation classes. In 1992, she was appointed to the City of Austin’s Child Care Council. She served as a docent at the Governor’s Mansion form 1984 – 2019, she was named Docent of the Year in 1998. Virginia was a beloved member of many groups including PEO, Sewing Club, and DMC. She enjoyed playing bridge, going to lunch, dinning and visiting with her many friends in Austin and Houston. She loved to travel and rarely said no when asked to do anything that life offered her.

Serving as pallbearers are; Wes Duke, Paul Campbell, Ryan Hardin, Phil Allen, David McDonald, Ricky Alexander, Mike Elliott and Mark Elliott.

A visitation will be on Thursday, July 22, 2021 at Weed-Corley-Fish Funeral Home from 5:00 -7:00 pm, 3125 N. Lamar Blvd., Austin, Texas. There will be a burial at Oakwood Cemetery Annex, 1600 Comal Street, Austin, Texas with a memorial service following at 11:00 am, July 23, 2021 at Tarrytown United Methodist Church, 2601 Exposition Blvd., Austin, Texas and a reception following at the church. If you are unable to attend the Memorial Service it will be Live Streamed:

In lieu of flowers the family request donations to Helping Hand Home for Children, 3804 Avenue B, Austin, Texas 78751, Tarrytown United Methodist Church Memorial Fund, 2601 Exposition Blvd., Austin, Texas, 78703, or to a charity of choice.


  • Wes Duke, Active Pallbearer
  • Paul Campbell, Active Pallbearer
  • Ryan Hardin, Active Pallbearer
  • Phil Allen, Active Pallbearer
  • David McDonald, Active Pallbearer
  • Ricky Alexander, Active Pallbearer
  • Mile Elliott, Active Pallbearer
  • Mark Elliott, Active Pallbearer


  • Visitation

    Thursday, July 22, 2021

  • Burial

    Friday, July 23, 2021

  • Funeral Service

    Friday, July 23, 2021



Virginia K. Duke

have a memory or condolence to add?

Mary Lou Post

July 23, 2021

Barbara and Jim and families, my sincere condolences on the loss of your mother. She was a delightful person, so warm and caring. Her smile and cheerful spirit were welcoming to all. I enjoyed visiting with her at the Christmas parties and other events - she was sincerely interested in catching up with me, and everyone. God bless you and keep you during this time.
-Mary Lou Price

Laurey and Charlie Stryker

July 23, 2021

We met Virginia and Bob when Barbara and Michael married. She warmly welcomed us to Austin and family. We met over the years as Shannon and Michele married. It was always a lovely reunion.

Joan DiCuffa

July 23, 2021

What a truly inspirational service today was! I’m only sorry I couldn’t stay for the reception. Love to all! Goodbye Virginia

Jerry Johnson

July 23, 2021

Jim ,Tracy and kids, we are so so sorry for your loss and for the next hurdles that are facing you. You all have our prayers and love, sincerely Jerry Johnson

Jim Mayfield

July 22, 2021

Virginia was a person of profound faith that she joyfully put to work in a variety ways to benefit others. It was an amazing gift of grace to have her as a good friend and during the 18 years I was her pastor to work with her; she was a kind, competent, gentle leader in the congregation. I shall especially miss her smile and special gift of laughter.
Jim Mayfield

Jim and Janet Bennett

July 22, 2021

Janet and I are so sad to hear the news of Virginia's passing.
We got to know Virginia as a result of Bob’s work with our trade association. Bob served as legal counsel for the Insurance Premium Finance Association of Texas for many years. Virginia would accompany Bob to meetings and get togethers over the years. We found her to be a special person with a personality like no other. She was an absolute joy to be around. She will be missed by so many.

Our prayers are with the family.

Jim and Janet

Jean Peel

July 21, 2021

My deepest sympathy and love to Barbara and Jim, and all of Virginia’s extended family. I regret that I am not able to be with you at this time, but I am with you in spirit.
Virginia was the sister I always wanted but never had. I spent many happy hours with her in our childhood and frequent visits in her home as adults. These are treasured memories that I hold in my heart.
May God comfort you all in your loss.

Toni Strukely

July 21, 2021

Virginia was such a joy to be around. She was the welcoming hostess who always made you feel at home. She definitely knew how to enjoy life and the people around her. My earliest memories of her were when she & Bob would disappear for the weekend and turn their home over to Barbara and her friends every June 10th. As we got older they stayed around longer. We loved being with them.
I remember her dancing at Michelle’s wedding with a young man in a kilt. She wasn’t afraid to have a good time. She will be greatly missed.
Love to Barbara, Jimmy, and the rest of the family.

Ann Beaty

July 20, 2021

Sending all of you much love and prayers. I can only imagine the heavenly reunion for Virginia with her beloved Bob and son Bobby. The Duke family will always hold a special place in my heart and memories.

Shannon Kennedy

July 20, 2021

I loved seeing Virginia’s beautiful smile as I looked out from the choir loft at church. I did not know her well, but she was always smiling and greeted everyone pleasantly. She will be missed! Love and prayers for her family!

Shannon Kennedy