Daniel Lee Redding, 68, peacefully passed into eternal rest on Friday evening surrounded by his loving family. Dan was born in Harvard on September 8, 1955, to Edward Redding Jr. and Marilyn (Stanek) Redding, their 4th child.
Dan or "Dano/Dink," to his friends, grew up in Harvard, where he was one of the earliest stars of Harvard High's fledgling wrestling team, while working daily on the family farm. He was known from his earliest days as being a happy mischief maker. Dan spent much of his youth learning construction and welding. After graduating from Harvard High, he was quickly recognized for his work ethic and dedication. Dan welded for various companies before finding his work family at Knaack for 31 years, where he ushered in the age of integrative technology and computer welding. He advanced to consultant, and eventual forklift trainer extraordinaire by the end of his tenure. Dan also welded as a hobby, making a one-of-a-kind "trike," an unmistakable blue beast with huge handlebars, that often roared down Ayer Street.
Having fun came naturally to Dan, who always had an easy smile and an ever-ready witty comeback. Family and friends will remember him for his gregarious personality, laughter that filled rooms, and his ability to converse with anyone. He had a passion for creating games in his workshop, solving difficult tavern puzzles, and planning parties, always making "great times" a priority.
He was also notorious for the complexity and efforts of his pranks, often creating clever ways to hide the gift of money into odd objects, that are difficult to get into. Dan was always up for any adventure, from Las Vegas slot machines or the Wisconsin State Fair, to the North Carolina racetracks. Dan lived an incredibly full life.
Dan made being a dad and grandpa ("Big-Belly Papa") look easy. The patience he showed with three daughters' driving lessons, boyfriends, break-ups, and teenage shenanigans was never ending. He always believed the best lessons came from "letting it play out" (though if his daughters snuck out a window at night, it was usually locked when they returned). His grandkids loved the Lego-built robots that were ready to compete in wrestling matches, the handmade wooden construction sets, and the endless chess and card games. He will truly be missed.
Dan's passing was preceded by his parents, Edward and Marilyn, and he is survived by his daughters Audra (Jerry) Schillaci of McHenry, Nadine (Andy) Farah of NC, Leah (Mike) Payne of NC, his siblings Robert Redding, Susan Redding and Linda Vaughn, his grandchildren Dylan Menchetti, Elliot Farah, Callie Payne, Evan Schillaci, Anthony Schillaci, his nephew, Eric Vaughn, and his devoted cat, Pumpkin.
A celebration of life will follow this summer.
In lieu of flowers, a donation may be made to the Assisi Animal Foundation, P.O. Box 143, Crystal Lake, IL 60039-0143 in honor of his loving cat, Pumpkin.