John McDaniel

John McDaniel
August 2, 1937 - May 2, 2024

John McDaniel was born August 2, 1937, to Ellen Hagstrand McDaniel and Dr V.S. McDaniel in Sargent NE. He died May 2, 2024, holding Mary’s hand. John attended school in Sargent through his junior year but graduated from Mt Vernon Washington High School. He earned an associate’s degree from Mt Vernon Community College. John married Mary Govaerts on December 27, 1959. Six children were born to this union: Cynthia (Bob) McBride, Jennifer (Steve) Burkstrand, Eric (Tammy Mannlien) McDaniel, Lex (Amber) McDaniel, Kristin (Mark) Slagle, and Joe (Teri) McDaniel. He has many grandchildren, great-grandchildren, and great-great-grandchildren.

John and Mary moved to the farm northwest of Sargent in 1963. They farmed and raised a myriad of animals: cattle, horses, hogs, sheep, goats, turkeys, chickens, ducks, geese, peacocks, dogs, and cats. John belonged to the Sargent Fire and EMT Department, served on the ambulance board, taught Sunday School, and CPR classes, and was a Boy Scout Leader.  John was an avid reader, which helped fill the time when he traveled while working for Burlington Northern Railroad for 22 years. John and Mary moved to town in 2017, where he developed his artistic talent, and his drawings and paintings are treasured by his family.

John’s family was very important to him, and he especially loved his time with the kids. He was creative when coming up with fun activities from building kites to tree forts to cardboard boats. He introduced “tanking” to the area and thoroughly enjoyed taking family and friends on the Calamus River. He loved to cook and bake and was famous for his bread. Next to Mary – Julia Child was a close second. John felt it was important to teach the family about gardening and preserving food and was known for his sauerkraut. He enjoyed camping and hunting with legendary stories of coons, fleas, and other mishaps.

He was preceded in death by his parents: Ellen and Doc, siblings: Dorce Lee Coslor, Floyd McDaniel, and Ginger Horacek, and a granddaughter Bailee McDaniel.

Memorials are suggested to the Sargent Backpack Program (through the Bulldog Education Foundation at or the Sargent Pool Fund A private celebration of life will be held on May 12th.