Rachel Coleman Duell; Co-Founded Theme Park Design Firm

Rachel Coleman Duell, 100, co-founder of a firm that specialized in designing theme parks, including Magic Mountain in Valencia, died June 3 in her Los Angeles home.

A native of Chappel, Neb., she moved to Long Beach in her teens and attended USC. There she met her husband, the late MGM art director and architect Randall Duell.

In the 1950s, the couple founded R. Duell and Associates (later Duell Enterprises) with Randall as architect and Rachel as business manager. After assisting with parks in Boston and New York, the firm took on its first solo project--Six Flags Over Texas, which established the Duell office as the premier creator of historic theme parks.

Among the firm's other parks are Magic Mountain, the original Universal Studios Tour and the now-defunct Lion Country Safari in Irvine and MGM Theme Park in Las Vegas. Farther afield, the Duells updated Hershey Park in Hershey, Pa., and created Opryland-USA in Nashville, Astroworld in Houston and parks in France, Belgium and Brazil.

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