: 08/21/1975
AGE : 29 years old
HEIGHT : 5'06"
WEIGHT : 140 lbs




Download Book

Story of Danny's
News Coverage
Music from

Surfers Memorial

If you have a story you would like to share please email it to:

As I sit here I can’t help but be absorbed in pain and grief consumed by an utter feeling of emptiness, but I know that Danny is looking down wishing we didn’t all feel this way. So I am going to attempt to remember the many good memories that my brother left me and see if I can share them with you. The problem is which one to use because there are so many.

I could tell you about time he accidentally rammed a hockey stick in my mouth leaving me with a hole in my tongue, or about the time I chipped his tooth with a teaspoon I flung across the room, but I don’t think my mother would appreciate that. I could also tell you about the time he and Chris Meehan tied me to a street hockey net in the driveway and shot street hockey pucks at me because I refused to play goalie that day, but I don’t think Chris would want me to tell you about that. I might even tell you about the first, and only, day I was able to return the favor and beat him in one of our infamous wrestling matches, but I wouldn’t want to egg him on because he might come back and pin me one last time to show who’s boss.
Instead, I’m going to tell you about a memory that didn’t take place that long ago and, in my mind, truly defined the relationship between two brothers who shared so much in common.

As a child I always wished I had a younger brother that I could guide and teach in the same manner my brother did for me. I even remember asking my mom to adopt a baby from Australia because I wanted my younger brother to have an Australian accent (I don’t know, I was young!). But I truly wanted to be able to give to someone the way my brother gave to me. I wanted someone to idolize me the way I idolized Danny. Danny did so much to teach me things and spread my horizon. He let me tag along when he went skateboarding or surfing, he helped me learn to play hockey, even though he had only just begun playing himself. He turned me on to music and brought me to tons of concerts, most recently a Phish show in Coney Island where Jay-Z came out for a surprise performance. Danny was convinced that show was for me alone because earlier in the day I was trying to get him to listen to some Jay-Z.

This memory was the first chance I had to switch roles with Danny and teach him something that was a big part of my life. I taught my brother how to snowboard at the end of the 2001 season. He loved it and wanted nothing but to ride from that day forward. In January in 2003, I had organized and week of training for my university’s ski team, which at the time, I was the president of. The trip was planned for a week of training at Mount Tremblant, a few hours north of Montreal. The ski team training trips were great because you learned a lot in the week’s time, plus, there were never any adults there so they were a ton of fun too. I thought this would be the perfect opportunity for Danny to learn and lot and also, to spent some time in my world as opposed to me always tagging along with him.

The week at Mount Tremblant was amazing. Danny improved so much on his riding that week and I could see him really embracing the sport and beginning to make it a part of who he is. We took the Canadian party scene by storm that week. They had never encountered a duo like my brother and I. I remember Danny asking how old everyone on the team was and I told him that we ranged from 18-22. He was floored that at 27 he was hanging out with 18 year olds but decided that he was gonna live an alternate ego for the week and be my little brother. He even bragged the night he got ID’d at a bar (especially since legal age in Canada is 18). We had truly switched roles.

The week was one of the best times I ever had with my brother and I remember walking away from it thinking that Danny and I had reached a level in our relationship that we hadn’t been to yet. For the first time, I was able to broaden his horizons and show him something new and I can’t tell you how honored I was to do that for someone who spent most his life doing that for me. I felt we were the closest we had ever been (and we were always very close) and that continued to grow from that week forward. Just two weeks ago, I was supposed to visit Danny in Idaho to snowboard so he could show me his new home and his new mountain, and he probably planned to show off some of his new skills.

That week in Tremblant was an experience I’ll never forget. In fact, I was just on the mountain today and I couldn’t help but think of Danny the whole time I was there. I miss my brother with all my heart. He showed me and taught me more in my 24 years than most people experience in a whole life time. In so many ways he defined who I am, but for that one week, I was able to do that for him, and I’ve never been more honored or proud in my life. ~Ryan

Danny and Ryan at Mount Tremblant
Danny and Ryan in 1981

I don’t know how it happened

When Danny and I first met, basically the only thing he could cook was a bowl of cereal. I think all he had in his house was a big box of power bars and a can of green beans. He ordered all of his food out, unless it was something homemade and delicious that his mom froze for him.

Then, I don’t know how it happened, but when I went to visit him in Idaho, I discovered that he had begun shopping...in a grocery store! He made breakfast every morning before going up to the mountain. Eggs with salmon! Toast! Grits! It was cool.

One day he started making some stir frys. Then he started calling up his mom to get her recipes for chicken parm. He did the whole bit...prosciutto, the sauce, garlic bread, everything. It was so good! Everyone loved it. But the dinner party favorite was his spaghetti and pork chops. He wowed us a few times with that one. I was very proud of him. ~Katie Brennan

Danny making eggs for Katie

My favorite "Big Brother" story

As I sit here trying to remember one of my favorite big brother stories, so many come to mind. Family vacations, the never ending trip where the ENTIRE family had to go with Danny on ALL his college interviews, being in the car while he drove in Manhattan...eeeek, I could go on for hours.
But, for some reason this one stupid story keeps popping into my head...

It was 1987 and I was having my first slumber party. I was 8, and wanted sooooo bad for my party to be cool. We had watched all the movies my mom rented and things were starting to drag. My cool party was turning out to be pretty bad.

Everyone was getting very bored so, I decided to organize a “talent show”. Uhg...what a bad idea!!! No one wanted to do it. The party was going horrible, and I was devastated.
Then OUT OF NOWHERE Danny peaked his head in. He had my very shy, 6 year old brother Ryan with him. He had a pillow up his shirt, to make himself look fat, and a boom box. Danny was definitely up to something.

They busted in blasting “The Fat Boys” and Danny lipsinked to EVERY word. He even broke out a few breakdancing moves for my friends. It was great, they loved him. I am pretty sure a few girls developed crushes that night and my very cool big brother had just saved my birthday party.
I don’t know why I remember that so well. It was such a silly thing, but, at 8 years old, it meant the world to me. I went to bed in my sleeping bag that night thanking god that he was there. ~Kristen

Danny and Kristen on Halloween
After our dance recital

My earliest memories of Danny

My earliest memories of Danny come from the car trip we all took to Florida in 1976. I was five years old and Danny and my brother Dennis were just babies. Uncle Harry and my Dad (Danny’s Uncle Jack) did the driving, and Aunt Joan and my Mom (Danny’s Aunt Margaret) took care of Danny and Dennis through all the driving and all the stops along the way. I rode in the back of the station wagon that Uncle Harry bought just for the trip. Thanks to Uncle Harry and his movie camera (which was always on), much of that trip is on film, and I have seen it so many times that I cannot fully separate my actual memories from the home movies. But I will always remember Danny and Dennis playing with Uncle Harry’s microphone and biting its top off! And I will always remember Danny and Dennis in the hotel swimming pool in their Styrofoam floating baby seats, with me doggy-paddling nearby.

From then on, Danny and Dennis were my constant partners in various games and sports, both real and video. I will always remember countless games of Nintendo hockey downstairs at Aunt Joan’s house, and street football games every Thanksgiving at Grandma’s house. I remember playing baseball in the backyard at Aunt Joan’s house one year at Danny’s birthday, and Danny catching a line drive in the face. I really felt bad that day, but Danny was fine. I remember playing ball in the house when I used to baby-sit for Danny, Kristen, and Ryan (sorry about that Aunt Joan!) Later, when I got my driver’s license, I would pick up Kristen, Ryan, and my brother Kevin after school and drive to Aunt Joan’s house, where Danny and I would play street hockey for hours—me tending goal and Danny working on various shots. It is hard for me to believe that both Kevin and Danny are no longer with us, but these memories will always be with me. To this day, whenever I go to Aunt Joan’s house I half-expect that we’ll all play some sort of game together and I’m a little disappointed that we don’t.

I will also remember fondly all of Danny’s various interests. It was always interesting to see what new thing Danny was trying. I remember going to his dance recitals a long time ago. I remember Uncle Harry taking me, Danny, and Dennis to a Devils game against the Penguins in the mid-1980’s (I think it was the first hockey game for all of us), which was the beginning of Danny’s life-long devotion to hockey. I remember when Danny was into Def Leppard, and dirt biking, and breakdancing, and then later surfing and snowboarding—not to mention computers, which became his career choice. I am probably missing a lot of other things but I can’t go on forever!

These are only a few of the many memories that have danced through my head in the last few weeks, and I am honored to be able to share them with all of Danny’s many friends and family. Farewell Danny, and take good care of Kevin and Grandpa. We miss all three of you very much. ~Your cousin, John

Remembering Danny

I understand the task at hand is to write a memorable, and preferable funny, anecdote about Danny. It is an undertaking both easy and difficult.

In the first summers in Point Pleasant I remember, much to his mother’s amusement, taking Danny for walks on the boardwalk (he was three or four) and using him to attract girls.

Later in his life as Danny graduated college and sought his path to the future I introduced him to Joe Korman and in return Danny help drag my somewhat backwards law firm into the computer age. Danny was always around when we’d concoct new ways to crash our network and I know at least one all-nighter spent by him installing wires and computers in my 75-year-old office building. But these stories beg the question of what Danny meant to his family or me.

I found the measure of his importance in the unending devotion of his parents and brother and sister when word of his disappearance reached them. For Joan and Harry a time of panic and sorrow. For Kristen and Ryan a time to act. We went to Idaho and walked the lake and the bridge. We organized the search and the information campaign. We did for Danny what we knew he would do for all of us. He was honest, compassionate and above all loyal to those he loved.

Danny’s passing and the strange, and cruel way it came upon us, has changes us all forever. On one of our trips to New York, Kristen and I met Robert Kennedy, Jr. Given how angry Danny was at George Bush’s re-election I think it would be appropriate to remember him in the way Ted Kennedy in his eulogy remembered Robert Kennedy:

“Love is not an easy feeling to put into words.
Nor is loyalty, or trust or joy. But he was all of these.
He loved life completely and he lived it intensely”

~ Uncle Lou

My Nephew Danny.

My memories of Danny start with the day he was born. Looking at him in the hospital I was so proud. Here he was my sister's first child and the first time I became an aunt. I can remember thinking that there was no need for a name card because he looked just like a little Harry. A month later Dennis was born. In the early years Danny and Dennis were like twins often wearing the same outfits, sucking on each other's pacifiers, sometimes sleeping in the same crib.

It was the sixth grade band concert at Lloyd Road School. Dennis was in the band and the highlight of the concert was a song that had become very popular because of the recent Pee Wee Herman craze "Tequila".

The band leader announced that a special quest was in the audience and as we all looked towards the back of the audience we saw Dennis leading Pee Wee Herman (Danny) to the stage. Danny looked just like Pee Wee and had his act down perfect. As he began his famous dance the crowd roared. I remember how hard Joan and I were laughing. It was a very special moment.

I haven't seen Pee Wee Herman on TV for many years but in the last few weeks I have turned on my TV at least twice just in time to see Pee Wee dance to Tequila. It instantly brought me back to that sixth grade concert and I can still see Kevin, Ryan, Kristen, John, Joan, Harry, Jack and I smiling.
~ Aunt Margaret


If you have a story you would like to share please email it to: