Frank "Duane" Fennel

July 14, 2021


Frank “ Duane” Fennel, 67 passed from this life into eternal life on July 14, 2021, with his children by his side.

Duane was born July 4, 1954 in Moberly, MO to the late lifelong Moberly businessman Henry C Fennel and Mary Louise (Williams) Fennel. He was proceeded in death by both of his parents, an Uncle, Robert (Bob) Fennel who was a significant influence in his life, and a mother in law Phyllis Bruner whom he loved like his own. He is survived by his children- daughter Gentry Bohm and son-in-law Shawn, their children Isaac and Isaiah, and son Gabriel (Gabe) Fennel and significant other Karisa Martin and their children Blake Martin and Lincoln Fennel. The mother of his children, Cheryl Fennel, a sister LeeAnn White, a niece, Mary VanCleve and her family, and other relatives, friends and family from his former marriage also survive.

Duane attended Renick schools and  later transferred to Moberly, where he graduated in 1972. He married Cheryl Bruner August 13, 1977. While their marriage later ended, their love did not. Duane worked for Norfolk & Southern Railroad, and later with the family business, Fennel Welding & Steel Supply. The business had been part of the Moberly community since the late 1800’s, first beginning as Wm Fennel Carriage and Wagon MFR and specialized in wagon making and blacksmithing. It later became Fennel Auto & Body Works, Inc. The building located on S. Clark St still bears the name. Duane also operated the store, F&G Sporting Goods, and was a long time member of the Magnum Gun Club. He dearly loved the family farm, working in the fields and with the cattle.

It has been said that Duane could be perfectly happy and content doing nothing but simply enjoying time. He was content with much and content with little. He was a very smart man, a dreamer and a planner, and could often be found at the kitchen table with his notepad and pen, drawing out plans. One result of this was the invention of the Super Snugger, a camper stabilizer that he had designed. He had many such inventions, creative designs and innovative solutions that he came up with throughout the years.

He was supportive of his children and whatever their dreams were. He never told them they could not achieve something they wanted to pursue, but he would at times shake his head and give a little chuckle (or a grunt) at their plans. Duane was a gentle soul, and had a heart to give, and would rather give and he go without than to not give at all. He himself experienced the giving generosity of many friends and family throughout the years, and it had meant a great deal to him, and was never forgotten. He rarely got mad, but you knew when he was, and had the best wit and humor. His sarcasm was on point and we enjoyed many laughs. With the sudden onset of dementia, his family at times struggled to figure out if he was being serious or sarcastic with them much of the time.

Duane planned and took his family on two grand adventures when his children were young, and the fun they shared on those trips and the many other camping trips made a lasting impression and the best memories. Duane’s father Henry was not a hunter or fisherman, but he wanted to give those skills and an outlet of the outdoors to his son, so entreated his brother, Duane’s uncle to teach him the skills of hunting. Duane enjoyed this hobby throughout his life, sharing his love of the outdoors and many fun times and memorable hunts with his son, son-in-law, and many friends.

Of all the good experienced of Duane’s life here on earth, the most important was the decision to call upon Jesus as his Savior. When a friend dropped by his house and shared with him a gospel tract, Duane accounted to his daughter that he read it and had placed his faith in Jesus. For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved-Romans 10:13. This is  the hope we have in our time of sorrow, and in the memories and times of missing him to come.

Words of comfort and support were shared with the family during a visitation at the Cater Funeral Home Chapel followed by services honoring Duane’s life.  Committal prayer and burial were in the Oakland Cemetery.

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