David Byron Daniel 1917 ~ 2006
June 29, 2006
David B. Daniel, 89, a 67-year resident of Boundary County, entered into his final rest on June 21, 2006, at Boundary Community hospital.
Dave, as he was more commonly known, was born in Salem, Illinois, January 21, 1917, to Jesse and Sarah Ann Daniel.
He lived in Illinois until he was five years old. At that time his family traveled by train to homestead near Thoeny, in northeast Montana. His growing up years in that desolate area were harsh and lean; but even at that he and his brothers found fun things to do.
In 1934, when he was 17, his family traveled from Thoeny to Bonners Ferry. They settled in the Deer Park area 14 miles north of Bonners Ferry and kept busy logging, cutting firewood and farming as they made a home.
In the fall of 1940 he, along with his brother Don, enlisted in the 148th Field artillery National Guard. Brothers John and Dean also enlisted in 1942. All four boys served the South Pacific war zone during World War II until it ended in 1945. He was proud to have served his country and received a bronze star and a purple heart for wounds received.
While serving during the war, in Australia, David met the love of his life, Barbara Thelma Sargent. They married on December 5, 1942. They were then separated by the war for four years until it was over and Thelma was able to come to Bonners Ferry to join David on the farm, where they continued to live until his death.
In the years that followed, three daughters and a son, Wendy, Marilyn, Tom and Dianne, were born to David and Thelma. During those years, the whole family was involved in the hard work of clearing land to create a farm, going from a dairy, to beef, to crop farming before he retired.
He was involved in the development of the Deer Park Water Association and was active in the Deer Park Community Hall.
He got his most enjoyment from farming, his family, making all kinds of articles out of wood, and recalling war stories. He was contented and satisfied with the accomplishments of his life. He enjoyed watching son Tom continue on owning and running the farm.
He also enjoyed music, playing different instruments and piano “by ear.” He and his brothers formed a dance band in their younger years. As his children and grand children came along, he liked to entertain them with harmonica music.
After retirement, he and Thelma enjoyed spending winters in Quartzsite Arizona for a number of years.
He was preceded in death by his mother and father; an infant sister; brothers, Russell, Dean and Don (who passed away just weeks ago); an infant grandson; son in law Larry Pruitt; and nephews Jerry and Gene Daniel.
He is survived by his wife of 63 years, Thelma; daughters Wendy and son in law Don Kramer, Marilyn Pruitt; and Dianne and son in law Steve Oxford; son Tom and daughter in law Sandy; grandchildren Rory and Damon Kramer, Lori (Pruitt) Sabin, Mike and Dan Pruitt, Wade, Shelby and David A. Daniel, Amy Oxford, Keri (Oxford) Abbey and Pat Oxford; 19 great grandchildren; brother, John and his wife Larena; sisters in law Faye Daniel, and Phyllis Daniel; one nephew and six nieces.
Memorial services were held Friday, June 30, at Springs of Living Water Free Methodist Church.
Originally published on the website - Kootenai Valley Press - June 29, 2006