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Viola Rosella Duke (Sowers), 88, of Apache Junction, Arizona,passed away June 12, 2019 in Phoenix, Arizona. She was born on June 26, 1930 in Wagoner, Oklahoma, to John Sylbester Sowers and Lilly Alice (Seaman).

As a child, Viola enjoyed singing in her church’s choir and playing hoop and stick game. As Viola grew, so did her hobbies. She loved gardening, collecting rocks, and making quilts. On her 18th birthday in 1948, she married the love of her life, Benny Willard Duke.

Throughout her life she worked first with Consolidated Citrus, later with Motorola, and finally with Mesa Citrus. But it is well known that Viola’s career was spent as a homemaker, loving wife to her husband, wonderful mother to her children, the leader of the Duke household, and a faithful member of the New Life Worship Center in Mesa, Arizona.

Viola is received in death by her parents, John and Lilly; four brothers; and five sisters. She lives on in the memories of her loving husband, Benny; her daughters, Wilma Dean, Catherine Ulyne, Carol, Rosella, and Cheryl; 11 grandchildren, 34 great grandchildren, and 13 great-great grandchildren.

Funeral Arrangements were entrusted to Mountain View Funeral Home and Cemetery, where Viola will be laid to rest. A Celebration of Life has been scheduled for Saturday, June 22, 2019 at 10:00 AM at Mountain View Funeral Home, 7900 E. Main St., Mesa, Arizona 85207.




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