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Danny Lee Dawson

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Danny Dawson

WAUSA — Memorial services for Danny Dawson, 86, Wausa, will be 11 a.m., Feb. 17, at United Methodist Church, Wausa. Rev. Judy Carlson will officiate, with burial at a later date in Magnet Cemetery.

Visitation will be 4-7 p.m., Thursday, at the church.

Brockhaus Funeral Home, Wausa, is in charge of arrangements.

Danny died Feb. 11, 2023, at Arbor Care Center, Hartington.

Danny Lee Dawson was born the 106-degree afternoon of July 19, 1936, to Floyd and Elvera (Halleen) Dawson. Danny grew up in his beloved Magnet, with his parents and foster brother, George Craig. He attended Magnet school where he excelled at basketball and baseball. Danny graduated in 1953 and subsequently attended Wayne State College for one semester.

In April 1954, Danny enlisted into the U.S. Navy. After completing initial training at Recruit Training Command, San Diego, Calif., he attended Mine Warfare technical “A” school at Yorktown, Va. He was later stationed at FASRON 112, NAS Whidbey Island, Oak Harbor, Wash. During his time at Oak Harbor, he rose to the rank of Petty Offic er 2nd Class (MN2) and often had extended detachments to USPACFLT locations at both Guam and Okinawa.

Danny married the love of his life, Shirley Bloomquist, Jan. 11, 1956. They had five children, Lisa, Timothy, Kim, Jill and Mark. Danny and Shirley lived in Oak Harbor, Wash., for one and a half years together before he was honorably discharged from the Navy in July 1957. They returned to Magnet, where he began working and driving truck for his father, Floyd. In 1959, they moved to Creighton, where the couple owned and operated a Derby branded full-service filling station. In 1962, they again returned to Magnet, where he drove full-time for his father at Magnet Oil Company and together formed a partnership in 1965. Over the years, the company expanded regionally and was outgrowing its footprint in the town of Magnet. Gradually, operations and equipment were moved to Hwy 59 & 81 junction where they had built a home a few years prior and the name was changed to Dawson Tank Lines in 1981, with ownership transitioning over to Dan and Shirley. As the business continued to grow, Dan and his oldest son, Tim, formed Dawson Transport Service Inc., as a second company in 1989. Combined, the two companies would eventually operate over 20 power units, servicing regional petroleum customers and expanding their operational profile to include national refrigeration and dry freight commodities.

Danny was a loving husband, father, grandfather and friend, who believed hard work yielded success and playing hard was its reward. He was dedicated to his trade and over the years formed life-long friendships with the many people he did business with, as well as those he served with. Danny enjoyed traveling with his wife of 67 years, as they antiqued their way across the country, acquiring depression glass, attending Minemen reunions, truck sales, petroleum conventions, and spending time at their second home in Laughlin, Nev., during retirement.

He was a member of the Nebraska Petroleum Marketers Association, Nebraska Trucking Association, and a life-time member of the VFW.

Danny is survived by his wife, Shirley; daughters, Lisa (Kevin) Anderson, Norfolk; Kim (Michael) Pick, Hartington; Jill Gillilan, Wausa; sons, Timothy (Cheryl) Dawson, Wausa, and Mark (Vanice) Dawson, Wausa; 12 grandchildren, Kevin (Jessica) Anderson Jr., Kristen (Alan) Colsden, Christopher Dawson, Andrew (Carrie) Dawson, Joshua (Rebecca) Erickson, Courtney Pick and fiancé Adam Loecker, Justen (Natalie) Gillilan, Jeremy (Rachel) Gillilan, Jared (Carrie) Gillilan, Gracie Dawson, Tug Dawson, and Ainsley Dawson; 24 great-grandchildren; sisters-in-law, Connie Wintz and Deloris Bloomquist, both of Wausa; brother-in-law, Dwight Bloomquist, Wausa; and many nieces and nephews.

He was preceded in death by his parents, Floyd and Elvera Dawson; foster brother, George Craig; father and mother-in-law, Harold and Katherine Bloomquist; sisters-in-law, Illa McLain and Lois Bloomquist; brothers-in-law, Dale Bloomquist, Harry Wintz and Byron McLain; and his two black Labrador retrievers, Bo and Cole.