Cover photo for William Daney's Obituary
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1934 William 2023

William Daney

November 18, 1934 — August 5, 2023

Dr. William C. Daney, remarkable and much-loved man, died peacefully in his sleep at home on Saturday, August 5, 2023, at the age of 88. He was vibrant and healthy to the end and was surrounded by his family the previous evening. William was born in Pueblo, Colorado on November 18, 1934, the first son of Isabel Stevenson Daney and William Lawrence Daney. His father-built steam engines which were important to William's early life. He and his brother spent their childhood weekends at Pueblo City Park helping their parents operate the train ride that the family owned. Later, his four children enjoyed many a birthday party riding the train at the park.

William attended public school in Pueblo, Colorado and was often the lead singer in high school musicals. He graduated Magna Cum Laude from the University of Colorado in Boulder where he studied pre-med because he grew up wanting to serve others as a physician. While in college he played tennis and was on the debate team. During his freshman year in college, he met the love of his life, Barbara Packan, and they married upon his graduation from college. He then attended the University of Colorado Medical School in Denver and graduated in 1960.

After graduation, William moved his family to Pueblo, Colorado, and completed an internship and residency in internal medicine at Saint Mary-Corwin Hospital. Then the new Dr. Daney established his family practice in Pueblo, Colorado, in the days when physicians still made house calls. His patients loved him and often expressed their gratitude with gifts of homemade tamales, a rock collection for his daughter, and even a pony! After fourteen years of family practice, he felt a need for a challenge and felt a calling to develop his skills in the emerging movement toward emergency medicine. He was appointed the director of the Emergency Care Center at Saint Mary-Cowin Hospital in Pueblo, Colorado. In 1979 Emergency Medicine was nationally recognized by the American Board of Medical Specialties. William Daney, known as a master diagnostician, was at the forefront of this new specialty. He was one of the first three physicians in the state of Colorado to be Board certified in emergency medicine. He later served as a Board Examiner from 1981-2005 as well as serving as the Medical Director of the National Registry Examination for the EMT Exam in 1997. He spent 10 years as the Emergency Room Director in Grand Rapids, Michigan, where he developed the protocol and training standards for EMT's nationally. He also served as an Associate Professor of Medicine at Michigan State University from 1983-1991, and a Clinical Assistant Professor of Family Practice and Community Medicine from 1992-2006. After moving to Waco, Texas, where he served as Director of Emergency Services at Hillcrest Baptist Medical Center, in addition to his usual duties, William began to train EMTs in many rural communities across the state, which he loved doing. This was facilitated by having a private pilot's license for many years. Medicine was a calling and a passion for William which was recognized by all who knew him. He was so beloved by the community that upon his retirement, for the first time in its history, the Mayor of the City of Waco created the William C. Daney Day on July 21, 2008, in recognition of his service to the community.

During William's time in Waco, the then President Bush often visited his ranch near Waco. Dr. Daney's Emergency Department, after completing full background checks, became the primary medical response facility for the President and his staff. The White House also called upon Dr. Daney to provide training to the medical team accompanying the President. He was awarded a Certificate of Appreciation from the White House Medical Unit for his service.

William and Barbara retired to Durango, Colorado, back to the mountains and fly fishing he so loved. He passed on his love of nature to his four children by taking them backpacking, camping, skiing, and fly fishing from an early age. The family also spent time traveling together; a favorite spot of everyone was Mazatlán, Mexico, where he returned many times with his wife and children and later with his grandchildren. He did everything with care and attention and passed on his love of life, nature, and music to his children. While growing up, the family often attended performances of the symphony, opera, and musicals. He celebrated his retirement with a fabulous fly-fishing trip with his son, Todd, in Kamchatka. He enjoyed being a member of the Durango Chorale Society and one of the highlights was when they participated with many other choral groups in an international performance in Greece. He was a true renaissance man of many interests and talents.

Eventually William and Barbara moved to Albuquerque to a wonderful community where they soon made many friends. While there, William took part in the yoga and Spanish classes and was a member of the chess club. He was an avid life-long learner, passionate about science, astronomy, photography, and of course fly fishing.

William Daney is survived by his wife of 67 years, Barbara Daney; and his four children, Colette, Tamara, Bill, and Todd; as well as his grandchildren, Alessandra, Natasha, Gabrielle and Eric and his brother David Daney and his family. He was deeply loved by his family and friends - his positive presence and humor were a blessing to all that were lucky enough to have him in their life. We will miss this lovable, funny, endearing man every day and he will live forever in our hearts with treasured memories.

The Celebration of Life is on Saturday, October 7th, 2023, at 2:00 p.m., to be held near Durango, Colorado at 256 River Ranch Circle, Bayfield, Colorado. We chose this spot by the river because William spent many happy hours fly fishing there. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Trout Unlimited at httpt://www.tu.org.

To send flowers to the family in memory of William Daney, please visit our flower store.

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