Norman Dane Jenniges, or “Duffy” as he is known to most, was born on June 13, 1946 to Valentine Jenniges Sr. and Rebecca Schleve in Hot Springs, South Dakota. He lived in Hot Springs for most of his youth and attended Hot Springs area schools. Duffy’s first job was as a meat cutter for a butcher in a local grocer. It was here that he originally developed his strong work ethic and a new skill set that would help him in the future as a hunter. After completing school, Duffy joined the United States Air Force. While serving in Vietnam in the second of two tours, Duffy was seriously injured during an attack. It was during this crisis that Duffy received Jesus Christ as his Lord and Savior. Not long afterwards, he was discharged and truly returned to his life in the United States. Duffy entered treatment and committed himself to sober living.
Following this period, Duffy began to work at a halfway house with the interest of helping others towards stability, safety, and sobriety. During this period of service, Duffy met DeeAnn and a relationship began to form. This connection expanded and deepened resulting in the two being wed on January 16, 1978. By that fall, Duffy and DeeAnn welcomed their first child into the world. Donald Valentine Jenniges burst into the world with a mischievous grin and a keen interest in just about everything under the sun. Afterwards the family moved to Lincoln, Nebraska where Duffy worked with the railroad for some years.
The family then relocated to Gillette, Wyoming, which would become Duffy’s home for the remainder of his days. He worked principally as a signal maintainer for the BNSF Railroad and had his railroad job for 20+ years. In 1985, Duffy and DeeAnn welcomed a second son, Reese Dane Jenniges. Duffy also became keenly interested in politics, helping local and statewide efforts for the Wyoming Democratic Party, and even running for office several times. Although his railroad vocation was a focus, Duffy’s real passion was volunteering. This was true whether he was working with fellow church members, recovering addicts, military veterans, or simply those in need. One common refrain Duffy said was, “do the next right thing.” This phrase constituted the backbone of his philosophical playbook, which he applied to nearly every part of his daily life.
When he was diagnosed with lung and brain cancer in 2022, he fought the disease with both tenacity and grace. Duffy passed away at his home on October 12, 2023 with his family by his side, he was 77 years old. He was preceded in death by his father Valentine, his mother Rebecca, and his siblings, Ann Jenniges, Valentine Jenniges Jr., Richard Jenniges, and David Jenniges. He is survived by his wife DeeAnn, his two sons Donny and Reese, and his siblings Jeannie Weasler, Mark Jenniges, Mick Jenniges, Jerry Jenniges, and Michelle Friedel. Duffy was an avid hunter, political animal, devoted churchgoer, veterans advocate, and ally to all in recovery.
A service in his honor will occur at 11:00 a.m., Saturday, October 21, 2023, at Grace Bible Church in Gillette, WY with a reception to follow also in Gillette, WY. For those who cannot attend and would like to send letters, cards, or other appreciations, please send them to P.O. Box 1836, Gillette, WY 82717. While the family is happy to receive flowers, food, and gifts, they understand that Duffy’s beliefs and actions were directly connected to helping others. As such, please send donations in his name to the Disabled American Veterans dav.org or to the Campbell County Senior Center firstname.lastname@example.org.