Duane B. Cornett

Duane B. Cornett, 84, of Portales, died Wednesday, Jan. 11, 2006, at the VA Hospital in Amarillo.

He was born Jan. 13, 1922, in Tres Piedras, to M.P. and Emma Barnard Cornett. He was the grandson of Dr. Joseph Barnard, pioneer doctor of Knox and Haskell Counties in Texas. He attended school in Plainview, Texas, but graduated in 1939 from Littlefield, Texas. He served with the 29th Division in the Army during World War II and was awarded the Purple Heart for wounds received while in battle in the Brittany Peninsula. He rejoined his company in Holland and pushed across the Ruhr River. They took the town of Julich, Germany, and drove the Germans back to Berlin.

Following the war, he worked in Yuma, Ariz., before becoming a farmer, west of Portales in 1947. He married Lecil Adams Mitchell on Sept. 3, 1965.

Family members said he was a happy, optimistic, intelligent person who was an avid lover of life and knowledge. Family members said he lived a fine example for his children by always seeing the best in people and was known for his honest business dealings.

He loved farming, traveling, history, reading and keeping up with current events, family members said.

He was preceded in death by his parents.

Survivors include his wife, Lecil; three step-sons, Melvin Mitchell of Amarillo, Randy Mitchell (and wife, Shelly) and Tim Mitchell, both of Portales; a daughter, Lecia Jo Cornett of Lanstuhl, Germany; a step-daughter, Gwen Limmer of Clovis; 12 grandchildren; 10 great-grandchildren; and a sister, Velma Davidson of Abilene.

The Rev. Walter Huber is officiating.

Burial will take place in Portales Cemetery.

Arrangements are by Wheeler Mortuary of Portales.