Durward "Duke" William Jardon, and his wife, Edith Virginia Jardon, both died recently at their home in Delta. Duke died on July 18, 2017, and Edith passed eight days later on July 26.
Duke was born on March 23, 1919, to Dona and Alfred Jardon in Cripple Creek. His family homesteaded a ranch in Florissant. He attended his first nine years of school in Florissant before moving to Colorado Springs where he graduated from Palmer High School in 1937. He then worked at Bethel Hospital in Colorado Springs.
Edith was born on May 10, 1920, in Read, to Emma and Willie Crim. She attended Read School through the eighth grade. Her family then moved to Delta where she graduated from Delta High School in 1937. She attended Blair Business College in Colorado Springs before starting work at Bethel Hospital.
It was at Bethel Hospital where Duke and Edith met. They were married on Dec. 23, 1940, in Raton, N.M., and celebrated 76 years of marriage last December.
They moved to Chicago in 1941 where Duke went to welding school. He then worked at Lindberg Engineering until he enlisted in the Navy in March 1944. He was immediately deployed to the Pacific Theater aboard LST 572 and was involved in the liberation of the Philippines and Okinawa. He was near Japan when the war ended, and was discharged from the Navy in early 1946.
After Duke enlisted in the Navy, Edith worked at Guardian Electric, a war plant that produced submarine parts. Following Duke's release from the service in 1946, they moved to Delta where they purchased the house that they resided in for the remainder of their lives.
After arriving in Delta, Duke initially worked at the Delta Canning Factory for several months before gaining employment for over 19 years as a lineman for Delta Municipal Light and Power. He worked as a meter and relay man for the Bureau of Reclamation in Montrose until he retired in 1986. He was active with the Boy Scouts, teaching first aid classes, and was a lifetime VFW member, a lifetime NRA member, and a Delta volunteer fireman for 38 years. He also ran his own fire extinguisher business for 45 years before finally selling it in 2010. He enjoyed arrowhead hunting, fishing and hunting, spending time with his family, and life in general.
Edith enjoyed arrowhead hunting, fishing, camping, being a Cub Scout den mother and working with the PTA. She was also a Sunshine School volunteer, a hospital Pink Lady for many years, and was the bookkeeper for Duke's fire extinguisher business.
They are survived by three sons, Reggie (Sally), Craig (Lil), and Travis (Pat); and numerous grandchildren, great-grandchildren, and great-great-grandchildren.Edith is also survived by her sister, Beulah.
There were no services. Contributions in Duke's memory may be made to the Delta Fire Department or the Salvation Army. Contributions in Edith's memory may be made to the Garnet Mesa Baptist Church in Delta.
Two fatal accidents occurred in Delta County within a two-day span last week.
Casey Gillenwater, 25, of Delta was killed the afternoon of Wednesday, Sept. 13, in a single-vehicle rollover on Highway 133 outside of Hotchkiss.