PALISADE -- Lester Eugene Daniel "Butch" died Thursday (Dec. 14, 2006), at Community Hospital in McCook. He was 60 years old.
He was born Dec. 28, 1945, to Orval R. and Goldie M. (Reeder) Daniel in Ogallala. He spent his childhood growing up in western Nebraska and Colorado.
He entered the service when he was 17 years of age and was a proud member of the Army Special Forces. He spent a total of 28 years serving as a proud soldier and was wounded more than once while doing so.
His valor, heroic and meritorious achievements are apparent in the medals received. The Purple Heart, Bronze Star, Meritorious Service, Army Commendation, Presidential Unit Commendation Award, Presidential Unit Citation, Vietnam Gallantry Cross with Palm plus many, many more. Valor, Heroic or meritorious achievement or service are listed as descriptions of the majority of the awards presented to him.
He retired from the military on July 31, 1990, and his commitment to the armed forces was still very apparent. At the time of his retirement he was a Master Sergeant.
Hunting, fishing and spending time in the outdoors were some of his favorite pastimes. His shop was the place you found him the most. He was continuously working on something new. Fixing a new room, adding a porch, or something to repair on their home. He also built beautiful unique pieces of rustic furniture from logs that are being used in their home.
He married Christine Spannagl and to this union a son Michael was born. He later married Ulrike "Betsy" (Strehle) King in North Carolina and helped raise her three children, Bettina, Henry and Charles.
They lived in the Durango, Colo., area after retiring from the military. They moved to Palisade in 2000 and he worked for the Hayes County Department of Roads for the last few years.
He was preceded in death by his father Orville "Pete" and three sisters, Donna Mae Garton, Janice Decker and Irene Fisher.
Survivors are his wife Betsy of Palisade; son Michael Daniel and wife, Angel of Panama City, Fla.; step-children Bettina McDonald and husband, Ellis of Fayetteville, N.C., Henry Strehle and wife Paula of Buzzard Bay, Mass., and Charles King and wife, Tess of Honolulu, Hawaii; four grandchildren; mother, Goldie Daniel of Wauneta; sisters, Imogene Peres of McCook, Eithel Stinnette of Ogallala, Ethel Stier and husband, George of Longmont, Colo.; brothers, Jack Daniel and wife, Colleen of Loveland, Colo., Wayne Daniel and wife, Joann of Hamlet, Harland Daniel and wife, Mary Lou of Palisade, Bobby Achilles in California, and Leroy Achilles; and numerous nieces and nephews.
Memorials may be given to the Palisade American Legion.
Funeral services will be Wednesday, 10:30 a.m. at the Palisade United Methodist Church with Rev. Judy Dye officiating. Burial will be in Meadow Lawn Cemetery in Hamlet.
Visitation is today and Tuesday until 8 p.m. Friends may sign his book at the funeral home or send condolences online at www.carpenterbreland.com
Carpenter Breland Funeral Home of McCook is in charge of the arrangements.