Emma “Louise” McDaniel…
was born to Dem and Pearl (Gray) Melvin on March 5, 1933 in Dill City, Oklahoma. She had a hard growing up. At a young age, she worked in cotton fields along with her siblings to make ends meet. At 19, she met her first husband, Chief Petty Officer Don D. Lairson while working at Frank and Oma’s Café in Sayre, Oklahoma. Don was stationed in California, so it was a long distance courting through postal service. He proposed through the mail. She caught a bus and started her life as a military wife. While stationed in the Phillipines, Don was killed in a helicopter crash. She returned to San Diego, a widow at a young age with two children, six and 10. She stayed at home with her children until they were in their teens and then began working at a dress boutique. She met Capt. Ronald E. McDaniel. They hit it off and married on February 4, 1971, nearly making it to 50 years of marriage! In 1972, they moved to Minnesota and resided two miles from Holland. She was employed at various places, including: a dress boutique, M and M, and at last, at Formans Paint Store, which she loved selling wallpaper. They moved back to El Reno, Oklahoma where they resided for over 30 years. While living in Oklahoma, she worked mainly in the school system in dietary at elementary schools. In 2015, they moved to Pipestone, Minnesota. She died suddenly at the Pipestone County Medical Center on Wednesday, October 2, 2019 at the age of 86 years, six months and 28 days.
While living in Minnesota, Louise attended the Holland Presbyterian Church where she enjoyed being in church choir. She was a Sunday school teacher in San Diego, California and El Reno, Oklahoma for preschool children. She collected porcelain dolls, and had a bedroom “doll room” and displayed them on shelves. She also had a curio cabinet full of tea cups and saucers. She enjoyed painting, starting with oils and became very good at it. She gave most of her creations away to friends and family. She loved storytelling and speaking of her years growing up. She was a very good cook. She loved anyone she met, especially children and was a good hugger.
She is lovingly remembered by her husband, Ronald E. McDaniel of Pipestone, Minnesota; her two daughters, Niki (Lairson) Morrow and Nita (Lairson) Rolph and her husband, David, all of Pipestone; five grandchildren, Melanie Threhane, Aaron Gamrak, Adam Gamrak, Gregory Versteeg and Eric Versteeg; 14 great-grandchildren, Emily, Megan, Ian, Jacob and Seth Threhane, Payton, Jayden, Matthew and Levi Gamrak, Ethan, Anniki and Chevy Gamrak, and Kade and Ryker Versteeg; her “adopted” granddaughter, Kaci Maquire; and many nieces and nephews. She was preceded in death by her first husband, Lt. Don D. Lairson; grandson, Matthew Hagan; her parents; and four siblings, Wanda “Jean”, Oleta “Tootie”, Ann, and Billy Joe.