Duane M. Small


Duane M. Small, age 64, died unexpectedly Sunday, September 27, 2020 at the St. Cloud Hospital due to heart failure. A celebration of life service will be held Saturday, November 7th at 1:00pm at the Word of Faith Family Church in Willmar.

Duane Marvin Small, son of Marvin and LaVonne, was born November 9, 1955 in Rock Rapids, Iowa. He graduated from George High School. He joined the Air Force in 1974 and served for 20 years. He worked for the California Department of Corrections for 10 years as a prison guard. In his retirement years, he enjoyed working and took jobs as a road construction flagman for Duininck’s Construction in Minnesota.

Duane married Carol Ann Simpson in 2003 in Oak Glen, California. They moved to Willmar, Minnesota in August 2012 with Carol’s brother, James. They became members of Word of Faith Family Church shortly after moving to Willmar after Duane sent an email to the pastor there inquiring about their church services. The story goes that the pastor rarely read his emails, but something told him to check his messages that day and the rest is history. Duane’s faith was a very important part of his life. He read the bible from cover to cover more than fifteen times. He always said his mission in life was to tell as many people as he could about Jesus. He loved telling everyone of his testimony.

Duane enjoyed shooting firearms and reloading ammo, fishing and hunting, and spending time with his family and friends. He enjoyed gardening and loved taking care of his beautiful roses in California. He was always up for a road trip with Carol and enjoyed seeing where that may take them. He also enjoyed talking with fellow veterans while attending doctors appointments in Minneapolis at the VA Medical Center.

He is survived by his loving wife Carol Small of Willmar, MN; children, Nichole Simpson (and Paul Carrillo) of Aliso Viejo, CA, Mark Small of Phoenix, AZ, Robert (and Sheena) Escalante of Corona, CA, Melinda Small of SD,; brothers David (and Patricia) Small of Texas, Dale Small of California; brother-in-law James Simpson of Willmar, MN, sister-in-law Mary (and Glenn) Tarvis of FL; 6 grandchildren and 2 great-grandchildren, besides other relatives and many friends.

He was preceded in death by his parents.

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