Lela graduated from Gravity high school and then attended teachers college at Red Oak. She taught school north of Ellston at the Dickson country school.
Lela married Vincent Dukes on February 27, 1932. At that time, she decided to stay home and work on the farm and raise a family.
Family and friends meant everything to Lela. She was the neighborhood grandma to many. She enjoyed dancing, gardening and playing cards. Lela was a member of the Ellston United Methodist Church.
Lela is survived by five children, oldest daughter Jane Lee Feeback (Jim) of Mount Ayr, Iowa, daughter Dorothy Burgher (Gary) of Kellerton, Iowa, daughter Doris Jean Redman of Mount Ayr, Iowa, son Joe Dean Dukes (Jan) of Ellston, Iowa and daughter Donna Rae Greenland (Kevin) of Ellston, Iowa; 16 grandchildren; 25 great-grandchildren; nine great-great- grandchildren; sister-in-law, Phyllis Dukes, and nieces and nephews.
Lela was preceded in death by husband Vincent in 1987, son Jimmy Dukes in 1972 and brothers Dale, Lee, Elbert and Mack Pershin.
A memorial fund has been established to HCI Care Services in Mount Ayr, Iowa. Arrangements were by Watson-Armstrong Funeral Home in Mount Ayr.
Services were held at the United Methodist Church in Ellston on Saturday, December 31, 2011, with Pastor Robin Thomas officiating. Musicians were Nancy Sackett, Mary Davenport and Margaret Bickers.
Honorary pallbearers included Marion Creveling, Bob Creveling, Ron Creveling, Roger Nurnberg, Ronnie Wood, Kenny Wood, Steve O’Grady, Gene Reed and Kenny Schaefer.
A private burial in the Ellston Cemetery will be held at a later date.