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Duane Richard ‘Dick’ Barsness

(Oct. 5, 1927 - March 26, 2013)

Duane Richard “Dick” Barsness, 85, died March 26, 2013 surrounded by family and friends.

Dick was born Oct. 5, 1927, in Plentywood, Mont., to Maurice and Irene (McKenzie) Barsness. He grew up in Medicine Lake, Mont., and graduated from Medicine Lake High School in 1944. He entered the U.S. Navy on completion of high school and was a first gunner mate on the USS Tucson from 1944-47.

In 1948, he enrolled at the University of Montana Pharmacy School and graduated in 1952. While at the University of Montana, he was involved in the Theta Chi fraternity and theater. On Jan. 11, 1951, he married the love of his life, L. Clarabelle Carter, and they were married for 62 years.

Dick started his pharmacy profession in 1952, working for Valley Drug in Chewelah, Wash. Shortly after, he and Clarabelle moved to Billings and worked at Chapple Drug as well as Malone’s Drug Store. In April 1958, he bought the Western Rexall Drug Company in Cody, and Cody became the place he would call home for the rest of his life.

After selling the drugstore in 1979, he was a traveling pharmacist throughout the state of Wyoming; he was a licensed pharmacist in the state of Wyoming for more than 50 years.

He enjoyed being a member of the Cody Rotary Club for more than 58 years and especially looked forward to the yearly Rotary show. He served as Rotary 545 district governor from 1982-83. He cherished the numerous friendships he made and the service opportunities Rotary provided.

Dick enjoyed fishing, golfing, flying and woodworking, but more than anything, he enjoyed following his children and grandchildren to the numerous activities they participated in. He was the biggest supporter of the Cody Broncs, Powell Panthers, Sunburst Refiners and Bozeman Hawks. He also loved watching the Colorado Rockies and the Montana Grizzlies.

Dick was preceded in death by his parents, brother, Gene Barsness and three children: Toy, Donald and Bobby.

He is survived by Clarabelle; son Dick (Diana) Barsness of Sunburst, Mont.; daughter Cindy Storti (Steve Christiansen) of Bemidji, Minn.; daughter Kathee (Ray) Hernandez of Powell; grandchildren Christopher (Allison), Kevin (Marisa) and Kyle (Brianna) Barsness; Amy (Ryan) Mikkola, Angela Storti; West (Katie), Wade (Brittney), Whitney Hernandez; and nine great-grandchildren: Breanne, Colton and Kaden Barsness; Carter, Avery and Teague Barsness; and Landon, Emery and Paxton Hernandez. Dick is also survived by several nieces and nephews.

Family and friends will always remember his witty sense of humor and love of making others laugh. He enjoyed sharing his knowledge and wisdom with everyone he encountered. As only the best of men can do, Dick had a way of creating bonds with others, making them feel like he knew them and they knew him.

Memorials may be sent to 2108 Shoshoni Tr N, Cody, WY 82414 and will be given to the Cody Rotary Scholarship Fund, the Wyoming School of Pharmacy and the Montana School of Pharmacy.

Services were held Saturday, March 30 at First Presbyterian Church in Cody. Burial was held at Riverside Cemetery with VFW Honors and bagpipe music from the Big Horn Scottish Society.

An online memorial is available at

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