Legendary county politician passes at 93
by Martha Sparks
Funeral services for one of Logan County’s historical and political giants will be held Saturday at Honaker Funeral Home.
Dan D. “Danny” Dahill, 93, of West Logan, died Mon., Apr. 15, at St. Mary’s Medical Center in Huntington after a short illness.
Born at Glen Jean, Dahill grew up in Omar and McConnell, graduating from Logan High School in 1937 and Notre Dame University in 1942 with honors. He enlisted in the U.S. Marine Corp on Feb. 3, 1941, eventually earning the rank of captain.
“I actually signed up on February 3rd, not long after the Pearl Harbor attack,” said Dahill in a 2003 interview. “When the war broke out, everyone was eager to enlist and fight. I specifically chose the Marine Corps because they promised to send us overseas.”
He went on to serve as a fighter pilot during World War II, flying a bent-wing F4U Corsair, and later training new pilots. After being honorably discharged on June 8, 1946, he completed his law degree at West Virginia University.
Always interested in local and state politics, Dahill ran for office and became a member of the West Virginia State House of Delegates from Logan County, 1957-60; and a member of West Virginia State Senate 7th District, 1961-64.
In 1960, Dan was heavily involved in the John Kennedy presidential movement in the Mountain State, working closely with local politicians like Tom Godby and Claude Ellis, leader of the John F. Kennedy for President Campaign in Logan County, and facing off against Raymond Chafin, head of the Hubert Humphrey for President Campaign. During this period, Dan was interviewed for Life Magazine for an article entitled, “A Small State Takes the Limelight,” written by Life correspondent Donald Wilson. The feature was about mountain politics and Dahill’s involvement in the Kennedy primary campaign.
He remained a practicing lawyer in Logan County until his death, most recently serving as the attorney for the town of West Logan.
Dahill is survived by his wife, Norma Jean; two daughters; a stepson, and five grandchildren.
Services will be conducted at 11 a.m. on Sat., April 20, at Honaker Funeral Home of Logan with visitation beginning at 9 a.m. Interment will be at Woodmere Memorial Park in Huntington.
— F. Keith Davis of Woodland Press LLC contributed to this report.
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