Daniel D. Karel, 56

On the evening of Tuesday May 25, 2021, Dan Karel, a loving, strong, spiritual man went home to God as his family and mother Angie prayed the Rosary with him. Dan was wearing his pink flamingo shirt because he said he wanted to “Go on the best vacation ever, and he wasn’t coming back!” He was ready to go home to God after two years of fighting Cholangiocarcinoma – Bile Duct Cancer.

Daniel Douglas Karel was born in Twin Falls, Idaho on November 19, 1964 to Francis and Angeline (Hurt) Karel. He lived south of Twin Falls on a little farm. Dan was the 3rd child joining his sister Emma and brother Craig, and they all attended Bickel Elementary. A few years later, John was born into the family. In 1975 the family moved to Buhl to build their home and farm with Dan’s Grandma and Grandpa Karel. Dan helped his Dad with farming and was also very good at fixing things for his mom. He attended Buhl High School and excelled in Music as a singer and trumpet player. He sang in the church choir with his Grandma Emma and she was so proud of him! After high school he had a scholarship to play trumpet but he chose to work at Green Giant and also at Smith’s grocery store. He decided to enroll in the Auto Upholstery program at Idaho State University.

A few years out of high school he met the new music teacher at church and telephoned her a few weeks later. His pick-up line was, “Mom wants to know if you want to come to dinner? She’s frying chicken.” He later told his sister Emma, “I’m going to marry her.” Dan and Laurie Terhaar were married on July 26, 1986. They lived in Blackfoot and later Shelley, Idaho while he finished upholstery school and later worked as an Upholsterer, Restaurant Manager, and was the first employee at Marshall’s Tile and Supply. While in Shelley they had three children: Calista, Kevin and Michael. He was involved in training the Altar Boys at Church and very active at Our Lady of Guadalupe Mission in Shelley. He also was the sound man for Laurie’s Singing/Drama/Choreography performing group, Soundsations

In the late 90’s Dan and the family moved to Lewiston where their youngest child Anthony was born. He worked at Skelton’s and was active in the Knights of Columbus serving as Deputy Grand Knight. He also was a 4-H leader with model rockets and cheered his kids on in their activities. Dan and his family hosted several international students who were studying English at LCSC.

In 2000, the family moved to Cottonwood, Idaho and Dan started working for Arnzen Building Construction, becoming a skilled carpenter and construction supervisor. He loved wood working and built tree houses, clocks and marimbas. Dan loved boating, camping, and spending time and reading stories to his kids. He was an excellent cook. He taught himself to play the accordion and mandolin and sang in the church and community choir. He dearly enjoyed playing the trumpet at Christmas with his sons and son-in-law Chris. He was a Boy Scout leader for years and was active in the Knights of Columbus serving as Grand Knight. Dan worked with the Youth Ministry program and chaperoned many student activities and trips. Dan also became an Area Representative with DM Discoveries, and later ISE International Student Exchange, and helped place and supervise over 200 students. Dan and his wife and family enjoyed traveling to many countries in Europe and South America with other student exchange representatives and became reacquainted with former students. Highlights include taking his parents to Rome, going to Fatima, exploring the ruins in Greece, and touring the countryside of Czech Republic, the home of many of Dan’s ancestors.

In April of 2019 Dan started experiencing symptoms on the day of his Dad’s death. A few weeks later it was determined to be Cholangiocarcinoma – Bile Duct Cancer. He fought this cancer bravely with surgery, many types of chemo, radiation, good nutrition, a cheerful attitude and faith in God. This battle lasted a little over two years yet he never cursed cancer. He said in a way, cancer was a gift. It gave him time to prepare and get his spiritual life and priorities in order. He fought this battle gallantly with poise and perseverance and was able to work mostly full time until the cancer came back last summer. He gradually focused more and more on learning about God and trying to discern God’s plan for him with his cancer journey. He prayed the Rosary daily and worked to eliminate distractions in his spiritual quest for knowledge and understanding. Dan very much appreciated all the prayers of everyone and wants everyone to know that he was praying for them and their intentions.

Dan is survived by his wife Laurie Karel of Cottonwood, ID, daughter Calista Cowan (Chris) and their children Miles and Ella of Craigmont, ID. He also has three sons: Kevin Karel and girlfriend Dottie Harmon and her son Aiden De Lorenze of Cottonwood, ID, Michael (Abby) Karel and their soon-to-be child of Boise, ID, and Anthony Karel of Lewiston, ID and Anthony’s fiancée, Chynna Wilcox, of Moscow, ID. His mother Angie Karel of Buhl, ID, sister Emma (Michelle) Karel-Ward of Troy, ID, brothers Craig (Kathleen) Karel of Filer, ID, and John (Renee) Karel of Eagle, ID. Dan also has numerous nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by his Dad Francis Karel and his grandparents Frank and Emma (Feiling) Karel, and Louis and Gladys (Owen) Hurt.

Viewing at Blackmer Funeral Home in Grangeville on Wednesday, June 2nd from 4:00-7:00 pm. Funeral is on Thursday, June 3rd at St. Anthony Church in Greencreek, ID. Rosary 2:00 pm and Mass 2:30 pm. Burial following Mass at Greencreek Cemetery. Arrangements are under the direction of the Blackmer Funeral Home, Grangeville. Send condolences to the family to

In lieu of flowers, Dan would be honored if you would volunteer a few hours with youth in your community, give to Hospice, Right to Life, Idaho Catholic Seminarian Fund, or a local family in need.

Dan, we miss you and love you so much! Pray for us!

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  • Joel & Mindy Pals says:

    Laurie and family, we have been praying for you all during this journey and we will continue. We will miss Dan and his joy for life! Prayers and love for you all, Joel and Mindy Pals

  • Bob MacDonald says:

    I remember Dan as a young lad in Buhl. As one of the children of Frank and Angie, you just know that they were fine kids!

  • Marcie Richeson Wray says:

    I went to high school with Dan. A very sweet soul. This eulogy is beautiful. My prayers to his family. God bless

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