Along with Sandy Sanders, Duke Duchman was one of the astronauts originally positioned to launch the Marvel-1 with Reed Richards and Ben Grimm. When Richards took the Marvel-1 on the flight that ended up transforming its tripulants into the Fantastic Four, Sue and Johnny Storm took the place of Duchman and Sanders, who had abandoned the project as they felt the spacecraft's radiation shielding was insufficient.
Both Duchman and Sanders would go on to continue their careers, living a normal life and raising their own families. When the National Air and Space Museum mounted an exhibition for the Marvel-1, Duchman and Sanders were invited to its opening. They stumbled into Sue and Johnny, who expressed remorse for swiping their spot, preventing them from potentially having become superheroes. Duchman and Sanders brushed off their concern with contempt and expressed a preference for their normal lives.