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THOMAS NEVILLE DUNCAN, 87, of Paris, died Friday, January 3, 2014 at Dubuis Hospital in Paris. Funeral services are set for 11:00 AM, Monday, January 6, 2014 at First United Methodist Church with Rev. Van Lazaroff and Rev. Bill Coleman officiating. A reception in the fellowship hall will be held immediately following the service. Burial will be in Evergreen Cemetery. The family will receive friends from 6:00-7:00 PM Sunday evening at the funeral home. Fry & Gibbs Funeral Home has charge of the arrangements.
Tommy was born April 3, 1926 to Thomas Byron and Alma Nelson Duncan. He attended Fourth Ward Elementary, Paris High School, Paris Junior College, and graduated from East Texas State University. He served in the US Navy as a dental technician. Mr. Duncan married Billie Lou Brown on August 1, 1954 in the First United Methodist Church of Paris where they have been faithful members for many years.
He was a teacher and coach at McCloud High School and Paris High School where he lead the 1955 Paris High baseball team to win the state championship and was voted Sports Writers Coach of the Year. He was the principal at Fourth Ward Elementary for 28 years and then at East Paris Elementary for one year prior to becoming the first principal at Aiken Elementary and ended his career there after 4 years.
Mr. Duncan was affiliated with Texas Elementary Principals and Supervisors Association, Retired Teachers Association, Paris Noon Optimist Club serving as president and Lt. Governor, Boys and Girls Club of Paris serving as a director, Original Paris Bass Club, and Paris Square Dancing Club. Mr. Duncan also filmed all the Paris High School football games for 40 years from 1954 to 1994. He worked tirelessly for the Optimist Auction also known as the Boys and Girls Club Auction. Fishing was his favorite hobby.
Mr. Duncan is survived by his wife, Billie Lou Duncan; daughter, Denise Francis Felty and husband Tommy; grandchildren, Jessica Nicole Avery and husband Christopher; and Allison Leigh Felty and fiancé Ross Dejoux.
He was the true definition of an eternal optimist with a sense of humor that he was known for. His unconditional love for his wife, daughter, son-in-law, and grandchildren was never ending. He touched so many children as an educator and through working with the Optimist Club and Boys and Girls Club. He will be missed but never forgotten.
Honorary pallbearers are members of the 1955 State Baseball Champions, directors of Paris Boys and Girls Club, and Henry Shaw, George Young, Bob Coleman, L.V. Morrow, and Jimmy Preston.
Memorials may be made to the Red River Valley Boys and Girls Club Foundation or the First United Methodist Church.
Online condolences may be made to the Duncan family by visiting www.fry-gibbs.com.