It is with great sorrow that we announce the passing of Daniel Millard Beekler, DDS, on Thursday, January 24, 2013, after a courageous two year battle with cancer. He was born June 19, 1934, in Santa Maria, California, to the late Dr. Albert M. Beekler and Adela Knotts Beekler. He graduated from Santa Maria High School in 1952, and he earned his BA degree from the University of California Berkeley in 1956. At Cal, he played on the Varsity golf team and was in the Alpha Sigma Phi Fraternity. He was in the United States Army from 1956-1958. He pursued a graduate degree from Saint Louis University School of Dentistry graduating in 1963. In 1966 he completed his Oral Surgery internship and residency at Parkland Memorial Hospital and University of Texas Southwestern Medical School in Dallas. July 1966 he opened the first Oral Surgery practice in Victoria and continued his practice for 35 years.
Dan was an avid golfer in Victoria for many years. He also enjoyed hunting dove, quail, ducks and pheasant. A pointer or retrieving dog was always close by his side and ready for action. He loved working with his retrievers, Dan, Seeker, Red and Ellie.
Dan was a member of the Texas Dental Association, American Dental Association, American Society of Oral & Maxillofacial Surgeons, Past President of the Texas Society of Oral Surgeons, Diplomat of the American Board of Oral & Maxillofacial Surgeons, and Clinical Professor in Oral & Maxillofacial Surgery at University of Texas Medical Branch, Galveston, Texas. He was a member of the Board of Directors and Past President of the Victoria Rotary Club and on the Board of Directors for the American Cancer Society, Texas Zoo and Victoria Country Club. Dan was also a member of Holy Family Catholic Church.
He is survived by his loving wife of 22 years, Margaret Smith Beekler; his children, Zachary Beekler, his wife Ana, and their daughter, Eden, Gretchen Beekler Davidson, and her children, Kendall and Conner, Kate Beekler LaBarbera, her husband, Bob, and their daughter Faith, and Margaret's children, Claude Smith, his wife, Michelle, and their sons, Jackson and Carter, and Todd Smith, his wife Angie, and their children, Mason and Mackenzie. Also surviving him is the mother of his children, Patricia Sturdy Beekler.
In addition to his parents he was preceded in death by his sister, Patricia Beekler Billington.
Special and warmest thanks are extended to close friend and caregiver, Dr. L. O. Riedel.
The family wishes to offer their thanks to Dr. Terry Whitehouse for his daily visits these last few weeks, Hospice of South Texas (Beth, Eva, Joe, Debra and many more) and Rosalinda and Rachel from Caring Senior Service. Their kindness and loving care was a comfort to both Dan and his family.
Visitation will be from 5-7 pm Sunday, January 27, 2013, at Rosewood Funeral Chapels. A Rosary will be recited at 7 pm.
Funeral services will be at 10 am Monday, January 28, 2013, at Holy Family Catholic Church with Rev. George Henninger officiating. Burial with full military honors under the auspices of the Victoria Veterans Council will follow at Resurrection Cemetery.
Pallbearers will be Dr. Fred Lykes, Dr. Tom Ashy, Dr. Ellwood Ernst, Venable Proctor, Tom Schmidt, Lee Swearingen, Dr. Tom Fordiani and Billy Janssen.
Honorary pallbearers will be Dr. Joe Enos, Breene Cantwell, Dr. Charlie Daniel, David Jones, DeTar Hospital doctor's lunchroom group and Victoria Country Club card room gang.
In lieu of flowers memorials may be made to Hospice of South Texas, 605 E. Locust, Victoria, Texas, 77901, M. D. Anderson Cancer Center, Melanoma & Skin Center, 1515 Holcombe Blvd., Houston, Texas, 77030-4009, Food Bank of the Golden Crescent, P. O. Box 5085, Victoria, Texas, 77903, or a charity of the donor's choice.
Words of comfort may be shared with the family at www.rosewoodfuneralchapel.com.