Danny Geer, Middle River, MN, 70 years, 3 months and 21 days, passed away Wednesday, July 25, 2018 at Sanford Medical Center, Thief River Falls, MN with his loving family by his side.
Funeral Service will be held on Tuesday, July 31, 2018 at 10:30am at First Lutheran Church in Middle River, MN with Pastors Ollie Urdahl and Bob Dahlen officiating. Burial will be held at First Lutheran Cemetery at Middle River, MN, immediately following the service.
Visitation will be held on Monday, July 30, 2018 from 5:00pm – 8:00pm with a 7:00pm prayer service at Johnson Funeral Service in Thief River Falls, MN.
Danny Lee Geer was born April 4, 1948 at Langdon, ND, the son of Roy and Mae (Sandlan) Geer. He seemed destined to be a railroader as he spent the first year of his life living in the depot in Dresden, ND. The family moved to Salol, MN in 1949. Though they only spent Danny’s early years there, he made many lifelong friends.
In 1958, the Geers moved to Middle River, MN as Roy was assigned the job of depot agent there. Entrepreneur, Danny Geer, secured a paper route with the Grand Forks Herald. He became an early morning familiar sight, delivering papers throughout the town. He gained a new friend along the way. A sheep decided to follow Danny daily.
In 1962, Roy was moved to Emerado, ND for one year. During that time, Danny attended confirmation classes and was confirmed in the Lutheran faith, a conviction that was important to him throughout his life. 1964 brought the Geers back to Middle River, where they lived in the “Foundry House” until his graduation from Middle River High School in 1966.
Following high school, Danny and his best friend, Jim Carriere, moved to the Twin Cities for about a year. In 1967, Danny enlisted in the United States Army under the “buddy system” with friend, Larry Nelson. Following basic training, he was deployed to Greece while his “buddy” went to Vietnam. Unhappy with that situation, Danny took matters into his own hands, personally penning a letter to then President Lyndon Baines Johnson asking for his deployment to be changed to Vietnam. To everyone’s surprise, permission was granted and he spent the next two years there.
When Danny returned to American soil in 1969, he returned to the Minneapolis/St. Paul area where he lived, worked and attended junior college.
He met Barb Rustad when he returned to Middle River in late 1972. She had recently moved to Middle River to teach music at the Middle River Community School. They began dating and were married on August 10th of that year. To this union, three children were born. Sarah Mae was stillborn. Brianna Lee joined the family on November 1st of 1976 and Jedediah Roy made his presence known on January 8th of 1979.
The Geer Family made Middle River their home throughout their married life and even after their eventual divorce. Danny and Barb remained friends and supported their kids as a family in all of their events in school, community and church. He continued to be the audience for those he loved to watch perform, and that courtesy was extended to his grandchildren, as well.
Danny was a great cook, and often was responsible for meal preparation when Barb and the kids were away at school, directing or participating in their many events. Danny was their biggest fan and never missed a chance to be in the audience. He also never missed a chance to pick up the toys, books, or papers that were a part of their lives and activities!
Danny joined the workforce of Burlington Northern Railroad, where he remained employed until his disability lay-off. His family had a long tradition of railroading, so he came by the profession easily, following in the footsteps of his dad and his grandpa.
One of Danny’s greatest passions was orderliness. In his spare time, he could almost always be found “cleaning his garage,” which seemed to the rest of the family like he was moving stuff from one side to the other in a great attempt to know just what he had in there! In later life, he loved going to auction sales, and bought, sold, and gave away items that he purchased. He was a generous soul…always willing to give to someone who needed something. If he had it to give, he didn’t hesitate!
Danny loved to play cards, and in the early days of marriage, Barb and Danny spent many nights and weekends over canasta (with best friends, Tom and KayDell Super) or whist and pinochle (with best friends, Tom and Lynn Gullikson). Some of those tournaments were months long before completion and usually had the losing couple purchasing dinner for the winners. Too much fun!
God truly has a sense of humor. Even though Danny and Barb were divorced, God didn’t allow them to be separated, even during the days prior to his death. Barb had been hospitalized when Danny was admitted for what turned out to be his final days. Much to his kids’ surprise and amusement, he was placed in the room next door to Barb. The nurses and staff were amazed at the ease the family could move from room to room during the time they spent there.
Over the years, Danny was a member of Hans E. Lian Post 444 American Legion, the Middle River Community Club, Senior Citizens, First Lutheran Church in Middle River (where he was a member of the Council and served as its president for a period of time), United Methodist Church of Thief River Falls, and Rindahl Lutheran Church. He occasionally portrayed characters in plays put on by the Middle River Community Theatre. He often stole the show! He was also a member and performer in the infamous “Hee Haw, Middle River Style.”
Danny is survived by his three children: Blayne (Amber) Black of Halstad, MN; Brianna Geer of Middle River, MN; and Jedediah (Nicole) Geer of Bismarck, ND: Ex-wife and friend Barb Geer of Middle River, MN: Sisters; Terrye (Jerry) Forst Succo of Shafer, MN; and Tonie (Randy) Black of Tenstrike, MN: Grandchildren; AnnaMaria, Brewster, Augustus “Augie”, Navy, Phoenix and Sirius Black; Malayna (Terence) Timm, Sherman Geer and Zoey Helm; Chase, Karissa and Adria Geer: Great-grandchildren; Legend and Livingston Black, Jordyn Timm; and many nieces, nephews, other relatives and friends.
He is preceded in death by his parents; Daughter, Sarah Mae Geer; and Nephew, Dustin Black.