There is an old Buddhist saying that death comes suddenly and without warning. That contemplation helps us to live each day with the wisdom that comes from knowing it might be our last. In the modern world with our medical knowledge and long life expectancy, death usually comes with considerable warning and preparation, as it did for Douglas Ray Tharp on Aug. 31, 2012. Doug was born to Caroline Rountree Tharp and Richard Columbus Tharp on July 9, 1920 in Brookston, Texas. Doug wore many hats during his lifetime but the most cherished was his cowboy hat. His roots were grounded in agriculture and ranching in Deming for more than 50 years. Cowboys are the backbone of our country but unfortunately we have lost one who loved his country and community immensely. Doug shared his values of helping others and worked for the benefit of his community. In 2010, Doug was preceded in death by the love of his life, Mary Josephine (Preso) Tharp. Mary has now had the pleasure of welcoming him home with open arms and they are experiencing the joy of being together again forever. Akimel O'Otham, a Pima Indian wrote, "Go through the remainder of your days treating everyone fair - that you may be treated the same. When you come to the road of the singing and dancing grounds, you will have nothing to regret, knowing that you have done your part while here." Doug felt safe and free to be exactly who he was and he maintained his persona and dignity to his last breath. Indian tradition would call him a true warrior. There will be a gravesite service celebrating his life at the Deming Cemetery on Thursday, Sept. 6 at 10 a.m. In lieu of flowers it is suggested that memorials be made to Mimbres Valley Home Health Hospice. Entrusted to the care of Baca's Funeral Chapels, exclusive provider for "Veterans & Family Memorial Care," 811 S. Gold Ave., Deming, NM 88030. Phone: (575) 546-9671. To sign the online guest book or to send a card, please visit our website at www.bacasfuneralchapels.com.
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Published in Las Cruces Sun-News on Sept. 5, 2012