Kent Daniels Profile Photo
1939 Kent 2023

Kent Daniels

May 28, 1939 — May 4, 2023

KENT EDWARD "BIG DAN" DANIELS

Kent was born on May 28, 1939 in Los Angeles, CA. He was born to Bob and Louise Daniels, whom he loved with all of his heart.

Kent passed away on Thursday, May 4, 2023 surrounded by loving family and friends after losing a brief battle with cancer.

At the age of 83, he had lived his life to the fullest and on his own terms. Kent had several nicknames throughout his life: Kent, Big Dan, The Ol'Bird, Animal Man, or simply Dan.

As a youth, he graduated the eighth grade from Helmville Elementary and worked as a ranch hand on the Wales Ranch in the Helmville Valley.

He later moved to Missoula, where he was amongst the first graduating class from Sentinel High School. Big Dan was the state champion in the heavyweight division for wrestling, earning himself a scholarship to the University of Wyoming. During that time, Dan had many injuries to his knees, causing his wrestling career to be cut short.

Upon his return to Missoula, he worked at The Van-Evans Lumber Mill. During this time, he met his first wife, Julie, who blessed him with two sons. Deeder, his oldest, is a self-made business man that resides in Huson, MT. Farrett, his second child, is a heavy highway construction worker who lives near Ovando, MT. Both inherited his diligent work ethic and admiration for nature.

Later, he became a mixologist at some of the finer establishments in Missoula and California. He then moved on to work at Clawson Manufacturing for a long time, becoming close friends with Gene Clawson and family.

Kent later settled into becoming an over the road freight transport specialist. He was successful in logging over 1 million miles.

In November 1990, he married his loving wife Shirley, who joined him on the road. Upon their retirement, they both enjoyed a stint as school bus drivers in Ravalli County. Big Dan was an avid stock car racer and trap shooter from the early 1960's, and an outstanding member of the ATA (Amateur Trap shooter of America) shooting at over 100,000 registered targets, until his recent passing.

His other passion was playing cribbage, whether for fun with family and friends or in tournaments across the western United States.

On Friday mornings he could be found at a local eatery, having breakfast with his retired friends and family, regaling stories of the exploits of his magnificent life. He was a patient man and always willing to give advice to anyone that sought his knowledge. He was funny and fun to be around. His humor and memory did not fail him. He often referred to his memory as a "steel trap" that seldom got rusty.

Kent is preceded in death by his father Bob and mother Louise. His brothers, Danny and Jerry. Three of his wives: Lorie, Doreen, and Julie, and his stepdaughter Dana. Along with two of his grandchildren, Kaylene and Billy

He is survived by his wife Shirley-Florence, MT.

His older brother Jack Daniels-Cortland, NY.

His sons Deeder-Huson, MT and Farrett-Ovando, MT.

Nephews: Boone Daniels-Hayfork, CA. General Tupper Daniels-Tucson, AZ.

Nieces: Audra Daniels-Seattle, WA. Sarah T. Daniels- New York, NY.

Step Children: Linda Haverfield-Lolo, MT. George Price- Missoula, MT. Monte Moore-Clinton, MT. Kyle Moore Bailey-Missoula, MT. Colleen Moore Leister-Missoula, MT. JD Palaniuk-Stevensville, MT

And over 25 grandchildren and great grandchildren.

A Celebration of Life will be held on 05/20/2023 at

Katie O'Keefe's:

2100 Stephens Ave. Missoula, MT

from 10 am-2pm

The family has asked that all flowers be sent to:

The Village Senior Residence

2815 Old Fort Rd

Missoula, MT 59804

Rest easy Pard!!!

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Kent Daniels, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services

Celebration of Life

Saturday, May 20, 2023

10:00am - 2:00 pm (Mountain time)

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