Dedicated to the Preservation of the
U.S. Air Force Helicopter History
Daniel Joseph Collier, Sgt., USAFJanuary 14, 1948 – February 20, 2019
Daniel Joseph CollierFebruary 20, 2019Yuma, ArizonaGreen Hornets 20th Special Operations Squadron
Daniel Joseph Collier was born in Cloquet on January 14, 1948 to Ben and Rose. He spent his childhood years in Wright, Cloquet, and Kettle River with siblings Juanita, Mike, Guy, Janine, and Cindy. Dan and his brothers were the typical mischievous 1950’s boys. The family was eventually blessed with Gene Hermanson, the father they didn’t have, and moved to “the farm” on the Kettle River. Sister Sandra soon followed. Dan spent his high school years in Moose Lake and Barnum creating many lifelong friends.
He graduated from Barnum high school in 1966 and there was no need for the Country to call him, as the call was in his heart. Dan enlisted in the United States Air Force and began his tour in Vietnam as a Crew Chief/ Door Gunner with the Green Hornets 20th Special Operations Squadron in December of 1968, eventually achieving the rank of Sergeant. Dan often recalled that upon arrival he was told his life expectancy was 7 minutes 18 seconds. Brothers Mike and Guy soon followed suit. As is the case with many Vets, wartime was not often spoken of by Dan, save the two times in country he was able to visit with his brother Mike. A bittersweet reunion no one can possibly imagine.
Dan came home to a life that cannot possibly be listed in entirety. He has four children whom he loves dearly: Dan Jr (Kelly), Doug (Jen), Dawn (Travis), and Marissa (Bill). He spent most of his working days at Moose Lake Power and Light, however he was also a bartender, apprentice police officer, and drove semi for many, including Heaton’s, Hammitt’s, Dressel’s, and Steen’s.
Dan was a business owner spending some time in a dump truck and bobcat, but his most accomplished endeavor was Dan’s Auto Body where his perfectionism could truly shine in a coat of metallic blue or the fine lines of copper pin striping. He had one rule: If I won’t drive it down Main Street, neither will you. His pens proudly boasted “Not perfect but damn close” in true Dan style.
Dan was a member and President of the Moose Lake Jaycees for several years and the Haunted House was one of his favorite projects. He played many roles, including mummy, cannibal, swamp monster, and the most loved and cherished, Freddy Krueger.
Dan had several hobbies: hunting, fishing, bowling (real and Wii), leather work, wood work, painting, gold panning, and tinkering. He spent many years playing for and sponsoring the softball team. There was nothing he wasn’t great at.
Dan spent his final years with his two loves, Arizona and Carolyn. He was surrounded by friends at the local AmVets Club. He and Carolyn often shared the home with visiting relatives and the two went on many grand adventures.
Dan passed peacefully surrounded by love from inches to continents away after a courageous and valiant battle with heart disease and stomach cancer never losing hope or his beautiful smile. He will be dearly missed by Carolyn, his siblings, his children, and his fifteen grandchildren; Cassie, Gracie, Hannah, Nick, Edea, Kynan, Davin, Olavi, Elsie, Jacob, Kolton, Kristin, Ryan, Evan, and Reed. Dan is also survived by several nieces, nephews, and cousins.
Godspeed Dad, on eagle’s wings.
The family would like to thank you for the endless well wishes extended as Dan began the journey to his final home, and the family begins their journey on Earth without him.
Services in Yuma will be at 11:30 Wednesday, Feb 27, 2019 at Gloria de Cristo Church.Services in Moose Lake will occur in late April/ early May.
~ GUEST BOOK ~
March 06, 2019Such a great man! Only knew him for a while but he was a great person to be around. He will be greatly missed.~Maria Staberg
March 01, 2019Danny RIP. I am a day late and dollar short again. Thinking of all you Colliers and friendship we had during our early years. Time has made us all much older and hopefully wiser. I will miss you Dan, I know I did not visit you often but I have thought of you. Perhaps we will meet in Valhalla someday.~Al Gronroos, Prescott Valley, Arizona
February 27, 2019My sincere sympathy to the whole family. God Bless all.~Barb Larson, Sturgeon Lake, Minnesota
February 27, 2019My condolences to the whole Collier family. I’ve known them for many years such a great enjoyable family to be around. Sending prayers to help heal the loss of a great person.~Dave Burt, Barnum, Minnesota
February 27, 2019Great memories going back to when the Colliers and Stones were kids. Deepest sympathy to the family. Thoughts and prayers for all. Carol Forse and family.
February 27, 2019Dan was a good neighbor and friend. So sorry for your lose.~Jusczak/ Baker, Fairbanks, Alaska
February 27, 2019Dear Sandra and family,What a beautiful tribute to your brother his obituary is.May God bless you and your family in this time of sorrow. ?Kelly~Kelly Murray, Rainier, Washington
February 26, 2019OMG I loved working with him at the Power Plant! He was my favorite & I have missed him! So sad for his family! He was truly a special guy!!~Cheryl Milczark, Moose Lake, Minnesota
February 26, 2019Dan was a very Loving And Gentle Man. Lucille Medeiros was blessed by Dan and Carolyn’s visits prayers and communion Thank-You!! We were all Blessed to have known him. I also remember He did Karaoke and was good at it! Peace, Prayer and Blessings to all of Dan’s Beautiful Carolyn and His Family!!Love to You All,Lucille and Sherry~Sherry Trasp, Yuma, Arizona
February 26, 2019A great man, always looked forward to running into him at the KR bar. He always had a great smile and fun conversation. My sincerest condolences to the family. Holly Olson (Lemke)~Holly Olson (Lemke), Esko, Minnesota
February 26, 2019My heart breaks, and I send many hugs and prayers to the family and friends during their time of loss. May they feel peace in their hearts and much love surrounding them as they say “until we meet again” to the one they love. Be blessed.~Cara Keinanen, Moose Lake, Minnesota
February 26, 2019Growing up just across a few yards from Dan and the kids, I have a lot of fond memories of him. I remember the haunted house, seeing Dan smile and wave from the power building, his body shop, too many memories to list. Keeping all the family close to my heart in your time of loss.~Eric Eller, Cloquet / Moose Lake, Minnesota
February 26, 2019A Christian man of honor and integrity.~John Arnold, Yuma, Arizona
February 26, 2019May your hearts soon be filled with wonderful memories of joyful times together as you celebrate a life well lived. You all took turns babysitting me and I always looked forward to seeing you all. Love from Mom & Dad also. Love Tony~Tony Tracy, Duluth, Minnesota
February 26, 2019Enjoyed my time playing bingo with Carolyn and Dan. Will miss his smile.~Marian Vogt,Yuma, Arizona
February 26, 2019My condolences to the family. What a great man with a mischievous sense of humor! RIP Dan. Thank you for your service.~Ruthann Parish, Moose Lake, Minnesota
February 26, 2019Will always remember hanging out with my Grandpa Bill and Dan at the power plant after school waiting to get a ride home with grandpa. He will be missed~Noelle Konieska (Eskuri), Moose lake
February 26, 2019I am so sorry to hear about your loss. Dan was a special person. You are all in my thoughts and prayers. God bless you all. HUGS!!!!!!~Rhonda Staberg Zimmer, Moose Lake, Minnesota