DORRALL KLUGE

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November 8, 1915 - December 22, 2012 DEL CITY Dorrall Merrell "Doogie" Kluge, age 97, Del City, Oklahoma, embarked on his greatest journey on December 22, 2012. He was born November 8, 1915, to parents, Charles William and Irene Kluge (Smith) in Neosho, Missouri. D.M.'s early life was one of movement with his parents. His father was a driller and engineer who worked in the oil fields. D.M. was the middle child between two sisters. His birth occurred in a tent in which his family lived. D.M. was a driller by age seven or eight. One day, while helping to build a wood rig in Denoya, Oklahoma, he forgot his father's caution to never strike tools together and consequently lost the sight in his left eye to a piece of steel at the age of ten. D.M. began his schooling in a one-room school in Half Way, Kentucky in 1922. These were the days of the slate styles and chicken in the lunch pail. Treats consisted of horehound sticks, cinnamon sticks, and chocolate bon-bons, which were available at the nearby general store. D.M. had a lifelong thirst for knowledge. He was reading newspapers and constantly drawing, coloring, and dabbling in the arts by the end of first grade. He was in all art projects, and his teachers took great interest in him due to his study habits and interest in learning. After attending nearly as many schools as grades completed, D.M. completed high school in 1936 in Lexington, Oklahoma, as an Honor Student. In school, he had written class compositions in satire, one of which was published in The Daily Oklahoman and attracted notice. In later years, he would also complete his degree with honors and become a graduate of Youngstown, Ohio, Refrigeration Heating and Air Conditioning. In 1937, during the Great Depression, with his schooling complete, Dorrall moved to Oklahoma City to find work. In early years, he peddled vegetables, delivered papers, and worked as a farm hand. His capital was less than ten dollars in 1937. It was during this time that he met and secured work with a hand decorator trained in Czechoslovakia. This man's work covered the Balkans, Turkey, Old Mexico, and into the U.S. Dorrall's interest served him well, as it was from this training and employment that he would gather the knowledge and skills that he would use for the remainder of his working years. Few now know the amount and quality of hand decoration once common in the homes dating the early 1900s. D.M. truly enjoyed and was proud of the work he produced during this time in his life. D.M. was most happy working with his hands, free of regimentation. He liked using his own ingenuity, originality, and creativity. In July 1939, D.M. renewed his acquaintance with the woman he would eventually marry, Miss Euna Lazelle Jarboe. He and Euna were married January 28, 1940. After 1941, D.M. spent the war years working on military bases supervising work crews. He worked at many ancillaries, including Will Rogers, Tinker Air Force Base, Gene Autry, as well as many others. In December of 1944, he was offered and quickly accepted work supervising the paint department at the State Capitol Complex as well as the Governor's mansion. With the birth of their daughter in 1949, D.M. and Euna purchased their home in Del City, Oklahoma. In 1973, while preparing for his retirement, D.M. purchased 20 acres in Southeast Cleveland County, Oklahoma, near Lexington. It was here that, after retiring in 1978 with 34 years of service, he began building a cabin in the woods. In recognition to his years of service, he was given a reception in the State Capitol Blue Room for his exceptional service to the State of Oklahoma. Once retired and after the cabin was done, it suited them so well that he and Euna moved there permanently in 1983. Dorrall had many outside interests. He was interested in all things outdoors. He loved to hunt and fish in places such as Oklahoma, Colorado, Utah, and New Mexico as well as others. He shot skeet and trap, and he played golf. Dorrall took his boys through Scouting: Cubs to Explorers, organizing each grade. He also took an active interest in all the children's education and sporting events in which they participated. In addition to creative arts, D.M. had a great interest in politics. He helped incorporate Midway Village and served on its original board, where he was elected clerk and trustee twice more. He would also serve as the inspector of his voting precinct. During the latter years of his life, circumstances forced a move from their cabin in Lexington back to Del City, which, for many years, had been their "motel," when in town. The couple returned to Prairie Lane in 1996. D.M. and Euna were married for more than 61 years until her death on April 10, 2001, at the home. His wife, mother, father, and two sisters preceded him in death. Dorrall is survived by his sons, Wendell Kluge and wife Sandy, Clyde Kluge and wife Donna, both of Oklahoma City; and daughter, Linda Clack and son-n-law Linden of Fort Worth, Texas; twelve grandchildren, fifteen great-grandchildren, and two great-great-grandchildren. Services are at 10 a.m. Saturday, December 29, 2012, in Candlewood Chapel at Ford Funeral Service.

Published in The Oklahoman on Dec. 27, 2012
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