Long time resident and businessman, Dan Nachel, passed away after a brief illness on April 4, 2018, with his wife and family present.
Dan was born to Daniel and Stella (Rendel) Nachel Oct. 4, 1933, in Sioux Falls, South Dakota. A highlight of his youth was visiting his maternal grandparents in Oklahoma City. He graduated from Washington High School in 1951. While in high school Dan became interested in journalism and photography working on the school newspaper. Following high school, he attended Augustana College studying journalism. He worked part time for the Associated Press and The Argus Leader newspaper to help fund his college studies.
After a year of college Dan moved to Albuquerque, New Mexico, joining his childhood best friend and attending the University of New Mexico with him. There he continued his studies in journalism while working at the local newspaper, the Albuquerque Journal as a photographer. While employed there he took pictures of John F. Kennedy Jr. and Lyndon B. Johnson as well as celebrities, Clint Eastwood, Jack Lord, Louis Armstrong and Glen Campbell, among many others
Dan joined the U.S. Air Force in the early 1950s attending flight school training at Harlingen Air Force Base in Texas, after which he returned to Sioux Falls and was a member of the Air National Guard for many years. During this time his interest in photography never waned. Following his passion, he secured work at a photography studio/camera store continuing to learn the craft that would become his career. While working at the studio he met and fell in love with Beverly Barton. He always said it was love at first sight. Dan and Beverly married on Feb. 1, 1957, and recently celebrated their 61st anniversary.
Dan and Beverly moved to Albuquerque and partnering with Dan’s best friend, opened a photo studio, Far West Photo. Nine years later the desert got to Dan and it was time to move again. Using vacations as an opportunity to research where to move, they fell in love with Oregon Coast on one of their trips and moved to Brookings with their two children in 1966 and opened their own studio. Dan’s Photo and Cameras operated for 36 years on Chetco Avenue until Dan’s retirement in 2002. Dan was proud to have been given the privilege of documenting the important events in people’s lives and providing keepsakes that commemorated proms, weddings, family reunions, sporting events and first birthdays to name a few.
As busy as he was operating his business, Dan found time to be active in the community as a member of the Lions Club, a life member of the Elks Lodge, one of the founders of the Quarterback Club (the predecessor of the Brookings-Harbor Booster’s Club) and the Brookings-Harbor Chamber of Commerce. Dan more recently participated on the City of Brookings Urban Renewal Committee. He was also a significant collaborator on the “Vacation Guide” with Dick and Polly Keusink.
Dan was also a dedicated father and grandfather. He traveled from San Francisco to Klamath Falls to Corvallis, so he would never miss a sporting event that his son played in. He also attended countless Rainbow Girl conventions as an escort for his daughter. He was encouraging and supportive making them both believe that they could do anything if they applied themselves. When his grandchildren started playing sports he was there with his camera taking pictures to capture their shining moments.
Beverly was the apple of Dan’s eye. He still called her honey bunch, his nickname for her after all the years they had been together. They loved to travel and visited Mexico many times, in addition to Nova Scotia and Costa Rica as well as much of the continental U.S.
After retiring, Dan had more time to devote to his other life’s passion: gardening. He loved planting his backyard garden with flowers, vegetables and fruit trees. He had a special system to prevent his tomatoes from getting the “blight” from the coastal fog. Dan then delighted in giving away the bounty of his garden to his family, friends and neighbors.
Dan was predeceased by his parents Daniel and Stella Nachel, his son Daniel Nachel III, his sister Ann and her husband Roger Mickelson. He is survived by his wife Beverly, his daughter Rebecca and her husband Ken Olsen, grandchildren Brian Olsen (April), Erik Olsen, Elizabeth Olsen, great granddaughter Thea Olsen, nieces Kim Mickelson (Frank) and Pamme Windhager (Steve), and his beloved aunt Jean Fisher.
Services are planned for May 5, 2018, at St. Timothy’s Episcopal Church at 1:30 p.m. In lieu of flowers the family suggests a contribution to Coastal Home Health and Hospice in Dan’s name.
Redwood Memorial Chapel is assisting the family. Condolences may be expressed online at www.redwoodmemorial.net.