Dr. Roy Daniel

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Dr. Roy E. Daniel, a former resident of Silsbee, passed away peacefully at 96 years of age at his home in San Antonio surrounded by his children. Born in 1921 in a small town in East Texas, he played football at Silsbee High School and delivered ice by a horse drawn wagon to make extra money during the summer. He began college at Stephen F. Austin and like all young men at that time, WW II interrupted the innocence of that generation. He married his high school sweetheart in 1942, Wanda Joyce Morgan, also of Silsbee, prior to reporting for combat duty. He enlisted in the Army Air Corps and became a pilot of the B 24, the heaviest bomber in the US fleet. Shot down over Yugoslavia on his 25th mission, he ensured that his entire crew abandoned the aircraft to safety below. Battling a parachute that had pre-opened, he managed to bail out seconds before his plane exploded. He was captured by pro-Nazi forces and placed before a firing squad, but was miraculously rescued by a Croatian officer who stopped the execution. He became a prisoner of war for the duration of the war until liberated by General George Patton standing on a tank that broke through the gate of the POW camp. Having endured incredible hardship and witnessed the cruel treatment of others at the hands of the Nazis, he returned home to America and never looked back. He enlisted in dental school at the University of Texas and graduated from the class of 1950, becoming a dental surgeon in the U S Army rising to the rank of Colonel. He was awarded the Purple Heart, the Legion of Merit and numerous other medals in his 33 years of active service in the Army. He later became a professor at Baylor College of Dentistry in Dallas and was awarded a fellowship in the prestigious American College of Dentists in 1984 for outstanding achievements in the advancement of dentistry. He was a member of the Omicron Kappa Upsilon Honorary Dental Society and became Professor Emeritus at Baylor College of Dentistry in 1987. He fathered five children, outlived two wives and adored his five grandchildren and two great-grandchildren. He was an avid hunter and fisherman and lived life to its absolute fullest. As he often told his family, "It has been the greatest of adventures. I've had the time of my life." He was a Christian and a Methodist. He was proceeded in death by his parents, Ike Daniel in 1947 and Grace Kelly-Daniel in 1999, both of Silsbee; his wife Wanda Morgan-Daniel in 1991, his second spouse Randi White- Daniel in 2004 of Wichita Falls, and a son Mike Daniel in 2017 of Buna. He is survived by his children, Roy E Daniel, Jr, and wife Virginia of Fischer, Herbert H. Daniel of Houston, daughters Denise Daniel and Mary Grace Robinson, both of Lynchburg, Virginia, and a sister Nan Forney and husband Larry of Liberty, Texas. Graveside services will be held at Ft Sam Houston National Cemetery in San Antonio on February 8, 2018 at 9:30 AM with full military honors. The family asks in lieu of flowers that donations be made in his memory to the American Red Cross that was so helpful to him as a prisoner of war. Sunset North Funeral Home of San Antonio TX (210-495- 7770) is handling arrangements.

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