Published: Thursday, November 29th, 2012
Ranny Duncan was born in Custer, S.D., Nov. 23, 1943, to Harold Duncan and Dorothy (Parsons) Duncan. The youngest of five children, Ranny spent his childhood on the playground playing any sport he could.
In high school, Ranny was named to the Black Hills Conference and All-State football teams. He also excelled in basketball and baseball.
"If it was round and bounced, I played it," Ranny said.
While Ranny enjoyed winning, he used losses as lessons in how to improve himself for the next challenge.
He graduated from Custer High School in 1961 and continued his education at Black Hills Teacher's College (S.D.). While there, he participated in football and baseball and was named Most Representative Senior Male. Eventually he went on to earn a master's degree in education.
Ranny spent his teaching and coaching career in Midland, Phillip and Spearfish, S.D. Many of Ranny's proudest moments as a coach were watching his players accomplish something new. While he celebrated many victories with his teams over the years, he also supported them through agonizing defeats. Win or lose, he never gave up on any of his players and they never gave up on him.
Ranny left teaching and started a new career in real estate/insurance. His work with National Mutual Benefit; Richards, Sutfin, Green & Duncan, Baer's Insurance, Century 21 and First Western Insurance made him a successful businessman for over 30 years.
Ranny was very involved in his church and the community. Kiwanis, Knights of Columbus and the Spearfish Regional Hospital Advisory Board are just a few of the civic organizations he was proud to be a part of. He was also instrumental in starting “Parents Who Care” at Spearfish High School.
Although Ranny had a passion for working and coaching, he was even more dedicated to his family. He fell in love with his high school sweetheart, Helen Moye, after an evening of jitterbugging to the car radio in front of Crazy Horse back in 1961. On June 18, 1966, Ranny married his soulmate and love of his life and later had four children—Kim, Kristy, Heather and Scott.
As their family grew, so did their dedication to raising their children. Ranny and Helen taught their children to be fair and to follow the Golden Rule. They also believed that once you earn somebody's trust, you must value it by being responsible enough to keep your word. Most importantly, Ranny and Helen always told their children that whenever you make a decision you should think about what your family would want and always put them before yourself.
Just when Ranny started thinking his days of raising kids were over, along came nine grandchildren whom he proudly nicknamed: Makenna (Bubsy), Brady (Bosco), Bridger (Magic), Brody (Shooter), Colter (Hawk), Cannon (Dunc), Tayler (Missy), Evan (Hondo) and Jordyn (Tilly). His grandkids were the center of his universe. Since all of them live in Spearfish, Ranny was able to help teach his grandkids many of the important lessons of growing up that he once taught his own children. His role of "coach" also took on a new definition. Whenever his grandkids were competing or performing, you could see Grandpa Duncan standing on the sidelines or in the stands cheering proudly.
After retiring in 2010, Ranny enjoyed his time chasing grandkids, putting on the golf course greens and spending time with Helen.
Ranny died Tuesday, Nov. 21, 2012, at Spearfish Regional Hospital. He was 68.
Ranny was preceded in death by his father, Harold; his sister, Jean (Bill) Shaffer; sister-in-law, Patricia Duncan; two nieces, Crystal Harris and Linda Platt; and beloved aunts and uncles.
He is survived by his wife of 46 years, Helen; his children, Kim Hartwig, Kristy (Steve) Byrd, Heather (Junior) Janvrin, and Scott (Angie) Duncan; nine grandchildren; his mother, Dorothy Monsen of Custer; sister, Jo Gray of Portland, Ore.; brothers, Richard Duncan of Roy, Utah, Dr. Ray Duncan of Aberdeen, S.D.; numerous nieces, nephews and cousins; uncle, Dewey Parsons of Seattle, Wash.; brother-and sister-in-law, Bob and Karen Moye; their daughters, Heidi (Randy) Parks, Abbie Moye-Suda; and their children Halle, Cade, Austynn and Noah, all of Spearfish.
Services were Nov. 23 at St. Joseph Catholic Church in Spearfish. Mass of Christian Burial followed at the church. Inurnment took place at Rose Hill Cemetery.
In lieu of flowers, memorials have been established for St. Joseph Catholic Church and the Yellow Jacket Athletic Foundation.
Online condolences may be written at www.fidler-isburgfuneralchapels.com.
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