It is so hard to say that. I don't like to think that he is. He is just gone and somehow that thought lets me believe somewhere that he will be back.
But I will always have my memories. No one can take them from me.
And so do all of his friends.
The following is from Dan's childhood friend, Ward T. Ward was one of the ones that just found out about Dan. Through his tears, he wrote me this:
Bikes. Growing up we were always on our bikes and we went everywhere. It's interesting that Danny's last bike was like the bikes we grew up on. Three speed Sturmey Archer "Mary Poppins" style bikes. Danny's was red. I had a black "Indian". School, music lessons,(Hannigan's of course), Boy Scout meetings, baseball practice, swimming pool we were all expected to get there on our bikes unless it involved being after dark or it was raining. A flat tire was like being grounded.
I don't know where the idea came from, but Danny and I would drop the front wheel off one of our bikes and then bolt the front fork over the back wheel of the other bike and, presto!! - an articulated tandem. We rode all over town like that. I don't think the idea was too popular with the folks.
There was nothing quite like the carefree freedom we had and the independence bestowed on us via our bikes.
We grew up in a wonderful town at a wonderful time. We were allowed everywhere (well, almost everywhere) And we were watched by everyone in town. We felt so very safe.
Thank you, Ward. He is alive with our memories.