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Dan Clark McNamara, a devoted husband, father and grandfather, died in peace surrounded by many family members at the Hospice House in Wausau, on June 13, 2020. He was 78 at the time of his passing.
Born on August 30, 1941 to John and Elizabeth McNamara, he spent his formative years in idyllic Superior, Wisc. Even in later years, he loved to tell stories of romping about with his many childhood friends. He started college close to home at the University of Wisconsin Superior, but finished at the Madison campus where he joined the Reserve Officer Training Corps.
After graduating, Dan married his childhood sweetheart, Mary Susan (Gray) McNamara, and joined the United States Air Force to serve his country. Together, they raised a family (two sons and a daughter) while stationed throughout the world in such places as Ohio, California, Texas, North Dakota, Nebraska, Montana, Florida, Guam, and Portugal. Over his career, Dan served in many roles including missile control officer, bombardier planning officer, and commander of military police. He retired as a Colonel. But not long after retirement, cancer took his wife, and his life changed again.
Dan married the second love of his life, Helen (Haynes) McNamara, then a librarian in Antigo. They settled in Antigo, but later moved to Wausau, Wisc. Dan spent several rewarding years teaching adult education classes with the Stockbridge-Munsee Band of Mohican Indians.
Dan and Helen lived together on the edge of Rib Mountain enjoying their life in retirement and spending time with their expanded families. He liked boating, fishing, birding, cheesing, and cheering on the Green Bay Packers. They travelled frequently (including in a massive RV) throughout the United States and abroad. Helen was constantly at his side throughout his medical travails during the last year.
Dan is survived by his devoted wife, Helen, and a large family, including: sister Margie Doyle of St. Paul, Minnesota; son Tom (Adrienne) McNamara and grandchildren Conor, Maureen, and Brigid of Denver, Colorado; son Tim (Donna) McNamara and granddaughter Rachael of Dallas, Texas; daughter Patty (Chris) Dunleavy and grandchildren Lauren, Morgan, Cathryn, Taylor and T.J. of Rogers, Minnesota; step-daughter Patty (Jeff) Mayers and grandchildren Jack and Marie of Madison, Wisc.; and step-daughter Chrissy Richter and grandchildren Max and Samantha of Madison.
Dan’s funeral will be at St. Anne’s Catholic Church in Wausau, and he will be interred in Superior. However, due to the health concerns caused by the unprecedented COVID pandemic the services will be private. Friends are encouraged to reach out to the family directly.
Peterson/Kraemer Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements. Online condolences may be expressed at www.petersonkraemer.com