Corl, E. Luke (December 24, 1916 - June 20, 2008)

E. Luke Corl

1916 - 2008

Douglas Budget - June 25, 2008

Funeral services for longtime Wheatland resident, E. Luke Corl, 91, was conducted June 24 at the First Christian Church in Wheatland with Pastor Andy Gudahl officiating. Interment with military rites accorded by Veterans of Foreign Wars Post #3558 and Ora Call American Legion Post #10 was in the Wheatland Cemetery.

E. Luke Corl turned out his horse, hung up his rope and spurs, and took off his boots and hat for the very last time on June 20, 2008.

Luke was born December 24, 1916, at home near Lambertville, Mich., the son of William Lloyd and Millie (Sessions) Corl.

Luke's mother died when he was two. When Luke was six, there was an anthrax scare and the government killed all the cattle, even the milk cow, on the family farm. The bank called in the farm loan causing Luke's family to be homeless. Thus, Luke started working for his room and board when he was seven years old, living with various families in Michigan and Missouri.

After saving his money for years, he took a train to Laramie, where he worked as a ranch hand for John McGill. Luke cowboyed for various ranches around Pinedale and Laramie. He also worked down in New Mexico for the Vermejo Park and Diamond A ranches. Luke's dad died when he was 23, when Luke was working for Vermejo Park.

In 1942, while working for the Miller Ranch, he was drafted into the Army, serving in the 1st Calvary, the last true horse calvary division. Luke served in the Pacific, including the campaign to liberate Manila and the Philippines. Luke earned four bronze stars while in combat and was honorably discharged in October 1945 after serving three-and-a-half years.

On October 8, 1947, Luke married Katie Belle Atkinson, a union that lasted 53 years until Katie's death. They worked on the Holly Hunt Ranch for three years in Laramie. In 1950, Luke and Kate formed a partnership with Tom and Jim Atkinson, and began ranching in Wheatland. In 1958, the partnership broke up and Luke and Kate began ranching on their own, building a successful ranch.

Luke was a member of the First Christian Church, the Laramie Peak Stockgrowers, the Wyoming Stockgrowers, Veterans of Foreign Wars, and a past member of the Over the Hill bowling team. Luke served as a director for the Wheatland REA. He won awards for his cattle and his bowling.

Luke was honest, trustworthy and had a great generosity for people who were in need. He was very hardworking his whole life, and had a determination to get the job done. He loved everything about being a rancher and was thorough in his work. His buildings and fences were always in good repair. He was an excellent cattleman and horseman, and took good care of all his cattle and horses. He loved his family and worked very hard to provide for them. He loved to read, especially historical books. He also liked especially cards and bowling.

His great sense of humor and wonderful smile will always be remembered. He was one of a kind.

Survivors include three children, Harry Corl, Janice Hyche, and Trese Tribelhorn and husband, Ron; five grandchildren, Ryker Hyche, Erica Hyche, Lindsey and Jackie Tribelhorn, and Jessica Corl; four great-grandchildren, Ashley, Caleb, and Jake Hyche, and Colorado French; and seven nieces and nephews, Chancey Corl, Lloyd Corl, Alvin Larned, Kinsey Larned, Wanda Baumbarger, Ann Rothman, and Delores Boyer.

He was preceded in death by his parents; his beloved wife Katie Belle on August 8, 2001; a great-grandson, Ethan Hyche on November 10, 2001; son-in-law, Norm Hyche on November 13, 2005; four sisters; and seven brothers.

Serving as pallbearers were Bill Criss, Babe Olind, Lesli Atkinson, Hardy von Forell, Troy Lay, and Richard Johnson. Honorary pallbearers were Wilfred Meining, Fred McGuire, Lee Shoop, Dick Morrison, Jack Baker, Don Cundall, Don Van Pelt, Bob Jenkins and all of his many other friends.

Memorials in Luke's memory may be made to First State Bank, P.O. Box 39, Wheatland, WY 82201.

Gorman Funeral Homes - Platte Chapel of Wheatland was in charge of the arrangements.

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