George Merrill Duke

August 27, 1924March 13, 2020

George Merrill Duke, age 95 of Williamsburg passed away March 13, 2020 in Tennessee. George was born on August 27, 1924 in Hamond, Indiana to Garold and Jessie (Smith) Duke. After graduating from high school in 1942, George enlisted in the US Army and served during WWII. Upon returning home after the war, while attending college, he met and later married Helen Elizabeth Tichacek on June 10, 1950 at Messiah Lutheran Church. They were married for 68 years until she passed.

While employed at General Motors as a plant engineer, he traveled and lived at various locations retiring after 30 years, but finally settled in Williamsburg. Once residents, George was active with the Elk Rapids AmVets post #114 and they were also very involved members at Grace Lutheran Church where he was an elder. He led a very full life, and was an adventurous individual who loved to hunt and fish with his buddy Jim Buckler. He also obtained his private pilot’s certificate Dec. 3, 1948.

After Helen preceded him in death in 2018, he moved to Tennessee where he continued to make many new friends, enjoyed vacationing at Myrtle Beach, and even learning the game of cornhole. He is survived by his nephews & nieces Eugene (Ann) Vogel, Timothy (Karen) Vogel, James Vogel, Lynn (Bud) Occhi, Gail (Steven) Manche, Nancy (Donald) Thomas, Beth (Ray) McAnallen, Robert Radinsky, Donald (Peggy) Bishop, Wayne (Mary Ann) Bishop, and Sue (John) Humphryes. Also surviving is his faithful friend Karen Kane. Besides his wife, he was preceded by his sister Marjorie (Eugene) Vogel, and niece Maribeth Radinsky.

A memorial service will be held on Monday, June 8, 202 at 11:00 a.m at Grace Lutheran Church in Elk Rapids, followed by military honors at Yuba Cemetery.

Memorial contributions are appreciated to the AmVets of Elk Rapids, or to Grace Lutheran Church. Arrangements entrusted to the Covell Funeral Home of Elk Rapids.


  • Grace Lutheran Church
  • AmVets Post #114


  • Funeral Service

    Monday, June 8, 2020

  • Graveside AMVets Service

    Monday, June 8, 2020


George Merrill Duke

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