Dr. Claude Duckett's Obituary

A Dedicated Physician

Dr. Claude Duckett’s Obituary

Almost fifty years in Medical Practice - Health broken from over exertion - In profession during War - Known as an expert Diagnostician - Deceased a son and father of Physicians - Daughters all registered nurses - Served Barton County - In Legislature three terms - Elected by largest Majority in history - Forced to retire in 1957 - Health steadily declined - In critical condition since early May - Last rites at Konantz Chapel - On Wednesday afternoon - Interment in Faubion Cemetery - near Milford old home of deceased.

The last rites in memory of Dr. Claude E. Duckett have been set for 2:30 p.m., Wednesday at the Konantz chapel. Interment follows in Cook Cemetery, or perhaps better known locally as the Faubion cemetery, three miles south of Milford.

Dr. Duckett, 72, dean of the Barton county medical profession, died at his home here at Lamar at 3:48 p.m. Monday, after a long illness resulting from tuberculosis. He contracted the disease during World War Two, largely due to overwork in his profession. He was for many months the only medical doctor left in Lamar. The demands on his time and energy, day and night, were terrific. But true to his devotion to the ethics of his profession, he at no time spared himself, giving of this time and talents to the poor and underprivileged, more often than not without remuneration.

Finally it became necessary for him to retire from active practice and enter a tubercular sanitarium. He recovered to a large extent but was not able to return to general practice, limiting himself to office consultation.


During this time he was elected as representative in the legislature, serving three terms from 1951 to 1957. He was elected, as a candidate on the Democratic ticket, on the three occasions by the largest majority accorded any country officer. He could have remained as a representative from the county indefinitely had he chosen. But in 1956 his health again began to fail and he deemed it best to refrain from seeking a fourth term. Instead he gave his blessing to the Honorable Forrest Letton, present representative.

During the year 1957 his health gradually declined as the tuberculosis again became active. He spent several months in the Mt. Vernon sanitarium, but although improved, he failed to gain much strength. Late this spring his condition rapidly worsened. For the past three weeks his death had been expected almost daily.

Dr. Duckett was born March 3, 1886 at Cedarville, Missouri. He was the only son of Dr. T. H. Duckett and Matilda Taylor Duckett. When he was four years of age, his father moved to Milford to engage in the practice of medicine. The son, following in the footsteps of his father graduated from the Kansas City Medical school in 1909. He returned to Milford to engage in practice wi

th his father. He remained in the Milford community, where he, with his father, had established a reputation as an excellent and dedicated physician, until 1923, when he located in Lamar.

He had married while he was pursuing his medical education. His wife was Miss Pearl Faubion, member of a prominent Milford family. They were married July 4, 1907. Mrs. Duckett died July 14, 1924, leaving her husband with four young children and a newborn baby.

The deceased was known in medical circles as a remarkably accurate diagnostician. Specialists in Kansas City and at the Kansas Medical Center accorded him and his opinions the greatest respect and admiration. They were often known to say that when Dr. Claude Duckett sent a patient for observation and diagnosis, the diagnosis made by him, minus elaborate x-ray and laboratory tests, was almost invariably correct.

He was a doctor who most meticulously practiced the percepts set forth in the Hippocratic oath. He rode miles and miles in bad weather and on mud roads, day and night for years ministering to the sick and dying. If every man, woman and child in Barton County, attended by Dr. Duckett, should throw a rose upon his grave, there’d be a mountainous profusion. He never refused his services for monetary or other reasons. As a result he accumulated no fortune, and left perhaps more uncollected fees than those he collected in his almost fifty years of practice. He was, as we say, a man completely dedicated to his profession.

This was reflected in the lives of his children. His eldest son became the third generation Duckett physician. All three daughters entered the registered nursing profession and all three married medical doctors. The doctor son also married a registered nurse.

On September 16, 1931, the deceased married Mrs. Leona Harlow Weed. The marriage proved a happy one between a mature man and woman. The wife became devoted to the children of her husband by the first marriage, and attended her husband through the years of illness with affectionate and understanding care.

He leaves her widowed. The five surviving children are Dr. Thomas Gaylord Duckett of Hiawatha, Kansas, William Duckett of Milford, Mrs. Charles Isbell of Carthage, Mrs. James Campbell of Lawrence, Kansas and Mrs. George Wise of Kansas City. His mother, Mrs. T. H. Duckett of Lamar, three sisters, Mrs. Delbert Webb of Lamar; Mrs. Walter Vogelgesang of Haven, Kansas, Mrs. Eva Dinwiddie of Long Lane, Missouri and eleven grandchildren also survive.

Lamar Democrat

Submitted by Phillip Rector on January 18, 2002.

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