Paul Daniel Vestal, 75 of Caldwell, passed away the morning of May 30th from heart failure while driving through a beloved stretch near Stanley, Idaho. His final day was sprinkled with impromptu drop-ins on dear and special friends during a spontaneous trip out of town to visit his brother Mike, and were signature of Dan’s impulsive spirit, fun loving camaraderie, and dedication to marching to the beat of his own drum.
Dan was born July 29, 1945, in Pocatello, Idaho, son of Paul and Margret Vestal. He was the middle brother to eldest Jon and youngest Mike. He attended St. Joseph’s Catholic School, instilling in him a strong moral code and distinct dislike for tuna fish and pickle sandwiches. Dan graduated from Pocatello High School in 1963 and enlisted in the Army Reserves at Fort Ord in California. He earned three stripes. He went on to Idaho State University, where, among many other activities, he was a member of the Pi Kappa Alpha Fraternity, voted Sigma Nu Dream Man on Campus, and staged a “sit in” at President Davis’s office protesting the parking meters installed in the student parking lot (the meters were removed) and graduated with a BA in education in history and government in 1970. His avid and scholarly interest in history never waned throughout his life.
Dan married the love of his life and best friend, Becky Layne, in 1972. He first caught sight of her on an elevator at ISU and fell hook, line and sinker. They were married 48 years and were blessed with two beautiful children, Patrick, and Kathryn Vestal.
Dan began working at American Land & Title Co. during college, unaware that this would eventually lead to the building of his own company, Pioneer Title, from the ground up in Nampa, Idaho. Nampa became for him a town of cherished friends and colleagues. To Dan, a stranger wasn’t a stranger for long.
Dan’s innate love of competition and team building allowed him the honor of growing a company alongside talented, hardworking, and loyal individuals. The bedrock of Dan was family and home; Pioneer Title and those who worked with him were nothing short of this.
He was involved in many clubs, organizations, and boards over the years. He joined Kiwanis Club after just moving to Nampa to manage the Nampa Land and Title Co. After several years of flipping pancakes at the Stampede Breakfast and running the Kiwanis concession stand at the Snake River Stampede Rodeo, he became a Stampede Board member. He was instrumental in moving the Stampede from the rodeo grounds by Lakeside Park to the Idaho Center where it is today. He was a founding member of the Nampa Industrial Board and helped establish the Boys & Girls Club in Nampa, remaining an active and generous supporter.
When it came to politics, one was never left wondering where Dan stood on an issue. He relished debate and often went looking for one. He supported candidates of either party when he felt their contribution to the community or nation was helpful and true. Governor Cecil Andrus even went so far as to declare Dan Vestal the only Democrat in Canyon County. Perhaps not the only Democrat, but possibly the most vocal.
Dan was proud of his Irish ancestry, to say the least. His grandfather, Peter Long, was from County Cork and his grandmother, Josephine Ingalls, County Mayo. The shamrock became the trademark for Pioneer Title Company and the whole community was invited every St. Patrick’s Day to celebrate with bagpipes, fiddles, Irish tenors, leprechauns, shamrock cookies, and spirits.
His blood ran navy and gold for the Notre Dame Fighting Irish.
Dan’s passion for sports led him from participating, to coaching, to being a full-hearted fan. He was competitive in track during his high school years, and he kept up long distance running as a beloved pastime both he and Becky shared. They passed this on to Pat and Katy, who often joined them at fun runs. He looked forward every spring to running Robie Creek, helped start the Nampa Running Club, and ran the Sawtooth Challenge. Dan Vestal did nothing in moderation. Eventually his knees could not keep up with his fervor for pushing past the limits. This never stopped him from devoting summers to training his daughter, Katy, for upcoming cross-country seasons. You could find them on the long country roads, Dan driving slowly ahead, stopping at mile posts to hand her water from the car and goad her on in the heat.
Dan never missed an opportunity to be involved in whatever sport or activity his son Pat was in; from joining him on boy scout retreats, coaching his early AAU basketball teams, hosting team dinners, to renting RVs to travel across the state to watch Pat’s football team win state. We know it wasn't really just about a love for sports, it was a love for his son and daughter. He always tried to be there, to be part of, and be a source of support and encouragement for them.
Dan had a deep running love and loyalty for family and an inherent sense of compassion and generosity. Wherever Dan Vestal was, his presence was felt and an impact made.
“Oh, Danny Boy”, you are missed; we love you so.
Dan was preceded in death by his parents Paul and Margaret Vestal, uncles Joseph, John, Frank, Peter, Bob, and aunts Helen, Mary and his beloved aunt Cecilia O’Shea.
He is survived by his wife Becky and his much loved children Patrick and Kathryn, his two brothers Jon (Anne) Vestal, their children, Jon (JJ) Vestal Jr. and Margaret Anne (John) Ryder, Mike Vestal and his children Kyleigh and Keegan, his nieces and nephews; Lindsey, Van, and Ryan Vestal, Casey, and Vestal Ryder, his cousins Patty Casne, Marie Long, Bob (Sally) Long, and Jan (Joe) Morris. and the little family dog, Marley, who is wondering where his chicken treats have gone to.
Dan’s family will host a Rosary Service at 1:00 PM and Celebration of Life at 2:00 PM on Monday, June 21, 2021 at Still Water Hollow,18120 Dean Ln., Nampa, ID 83687. The family suggests that memorial contributions be sent to the Boys & Girls Club of Nampa, 316 Stampede Drive, Nampa ID 83687.
Arrangements are under the direction of the Nampa Funeral Home, Yraguen Chapel, 415 12th Ave. So – 208-442-8171 where an online guest book is available at www.nampafuneralhome.com
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