Lyle Lester Duncan, 86, a native of Siskiyou County, passed away on December 23rd in Chico after a brief illness.
Lyle, the youngest of eight children, was born on September 25, 1932, at the Dunsmuir Hospital to John and Hazel Duncan. Lyle attended elementary schools in Dunsmuir, Hornbrook, Kennett, Snowdon, Floriston and Maxwell. He attended Yreka High School briefly, before his family moved to McCloud (Car A) and Dunsmuir in his late teens. Lyle graduated from Dunsmuir High in 1950. During his senior year, he was captain of the undefeated Dunsmuir High football team. His love of sports eventually led him to a career in coaching, particularly girls’ softball. His daughters to be would play on several of his teams.
Like his brothers, Lyle joined the military. On Pearl Harbor Day, 1950, he joined the United States Navy and was assigned to Military Intelligence. He was state side for most of the Korean Conflict (1950 to 1953). His most interesting duty was during the early years of Project Blue Book, an investigation into UFOs. His uncle, Pacific WWII General John Cooley of the 1st Marine Division, had arranged for Lyle to attend the Naval Officers Academy in Annapolis, Maryland. Having obtained very high scores, his imperfect eye sight did not allow him to accept the position.
Lyle finished his hitch with the Navy on September 3rd of 1954. One year later, he married his longtime sweetheart, Margie Ellen Dorrell of Dunsmuir. Over the next 63 years of their marriage, they lived in many places, to include Dunsmuir, Lake Shastina, Mount Shasta, Chico, Sacramento and Hawaii. His primary employment was in education and accounting. One of his favorite pass times was playing pinochle with his wife Margie, his brother Bill and sister-in-law, Darlene.
Lyle is survived by his wife Margie; four daughters and their husbands, Patti (and Marty) Schneider, Suzie (and Steven) Spehling, Sandy (and Ken) Husband, Kim (and Clay) Forbes, twelve grandchildren, seventeen great grandchildren, numerous nieces, nephews, and friends. He is preceded in death by his parents, his three brothers, John Jr., Edward and William, and his four sisters Bertha, Laura, Patricia and Constance.