Michael Ray O’Daniels, age 74, died Friday, September 27, 2019, in his home surrounded by loving family and friends. Mr. O’Daniels was born on a naval base in New Hampshire to the late Dorothy Mae and Ray O’Daniels, raised in Council Bluffs, Iowa and then served as a deckhand on the inland waterways, working his way up to Operations Manager at American River Transportation Company, a division of ADM. With ARTCO, he had the great fortune of moving to Louisiana and settled there with his five children. Then, he worked for Metcalf Marine/St. John Fleeting and assisted with development of new business opportunities on the Lower Mississippi River with the Metcalf/Gaudet families, who took him in as one of their own. Mr. O’Daniels got a second chance at life in 2001 when he became a liver transplant recipient at Oschner Medical Center where he received excellent care. Preceded in death by his brother, Patrick O’Daniels, he is survived by his sister Mary O’Daniels and brother, Dennis O’Daniels. He had been married to Diane O’Daniels and is the Father of their five children -- Shawn Michael O’Daniels (Andrée Charvet); Brian Patrick O’Daniels (Donna Flowers O’Daniels); Michelle Marie O’Daniels (Michael Maloz); Kevin Ray O’Daniels (Gidget Mutchler O’Daniels); and Shannon Marie O’Daniels (Robert Brennan). Grandfather of six (6) grandchildren – Caroline O’Daniels, Jaggard O’Daniels, Kateyln O’Daniels, Benjamin Gugich, Catherine Gugich and Addison Gugich. Known for his quick wit, legendary story-telling abilities, and uncanny survival instincts, Mr. O’Daniels never met a stranger, saw everything he wanted to see, and did everything he wanted to do in this life. Special thanks to Father John Marse for his spiritual guidance and Edmond Ilski and neighbor, Nicole Dufrene for their companionship and assistance the last few years. Family and friends are welcome to join us Tuesday October 8, 2019 at St. Peter’s Catholic Church in Reserve, LA for visitation from 8:30 a.m., followed by a Funeral Mass at 10:30 a.m. He will be laid to rest at St. Patrick Cemetery No. 1, 5000 Canal Street, New Orleans, LA. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to St. Peter’s Catholic Church or the Archdiocese of New Orleans
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