Daniel W. O'Connor Jr.

A family burial service for Daniel W. O’Connor age 88 of Canton, NY will be held privately at Foxwood Memorial Park with a memorial service being held at St. Lawrence University at a later date.

Besides his beloved wife Carolyn, Dan is survived by his son Daniel III, his daughter Kathlyn and five grandchildren.

Dan was born in Jersey City, NJ on March 17, 1925. After several years the family moved to Scarsdale, NY and later to Brooklyn, NY. After attending Erasmus Hall High School he was chosen by the USN to study at Dartmouth College in 1943. While at Dartmouth he was active in the Dartmouth Glee Club and the Dartmouth Christian Union, majoring in English with a minor in Ancient Greek.

After graduation in November 1945, he was mustered out of the Navy, taught English for two years at Long Island University, after which he served for five years as Pastor of the Paramus Congregational Church in Paramus, NJ. In 1955 he returned to earn a Master’s degree and Ph.D. at Columbia University, New York.

In 1959 he was offered a position at St. Lawrence University in Canton, New York where he taught in the Department of Religious Studies and Classical Languages, as it was known then, for thirty years until his retirement in 1989. He became Charles A. Dana Professor of Religious Studies and Department Chairman. For many years, Dan escorted a number of graduates to the Middle East for an archeological seminar each January. In his years at St. Lawrence University he served in 1967-68 as Associate Dean of the University.

From 1964 until the present he has been a loyal member of the Rotary Club of Canton, serving as Club President in 1973-74, and in 1989-90 he was appointed as the District Governor of Rotary International, District 704 (comprising Western Quebec, Eastern Ontario and Northern New York). At that time 400 plus governors were chosen to lead Rotary the world over.

For many years he was a member of the U.S. Power Squadron and the National Association of Watch Collectors. From 1971 to 2009, he offered lectures on various subjects at the YMCA at Silver Bay, NY. After his retirement in 1990, Dan lectured to a number of Elderhostel’s all over the East, often five to seven week-long series, on such subjects as: The Dead Sea Scrolls, comparative religions, Normative Islam, Buddhism, Taoism and Confucianism and the history of time from Aristotle to Einstein? He also taught the Dead Sea Scrolls at SOAR for several years.

In addition to clocks and watches, his hobby was bird carving. Over the years, he carved approximately seventy birds, one of which received a second place at the New York State Fair in Syracuse, NY.

Contributions may be given to St. Lawrence University, 23 Ramoda Dr., Canton, NY 13617 for the Daniel O’Connor Memorial Fund, to help a 3rd or 4th year student who has expressed a firm interest in having a Major in Religious Studies, and/or to Hospice and Palliative Care of St. Lawrence Valley, 6805 SH 11, Potsdam, NY 13676. Online condolences can also be made at


  • Private Funeral Services Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Daniel W. O'Connor Jr.

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Jerry and Anne Stadel

May 9, 2013

Carolyn and family,
Jerry and I were, to quote another religion major, 'so lucky to have had Dan in our lives'. We have five decades of memories, from St. Lawrence and your visits to Florida to our recent phone conversation.
Dan radiated his love of learning and teaching, challenging us always. We will miss him.
We are so sorry for your loss.

May 2, 2013

Mrs O'Connor, I am very sorry for your loss. I will keep you in my prayers that God Our Father will give you the comfort that you need at this sorrowful time in your life. I really enjoyed meeting you and Mr O'Connor while I worked for Dr Nystrom. May God Bless you. Donna Alexander

Michael L. Berger

May 1, 2013

Dan was always an inspiration to me, whenever I stopped by, to either do computer work or to have dinner with Dan and his wife, Dan and I would end up in his den talking about politics, electronics and how the world could better itself. Dan was a very well educated man, his wife Carolyn was a loving wife to him, and a good cook. Dan's children, Dan Jr, and Kathlyn, are dedicated children to both of their parents. The few years I spent with his family, I will always cherish in my heart.
May he rest in gods peace and comfort.

Michael l. Berger

Michele Skidds RN

May 1, 2013

I treasured the brief moments I spent in Dr.Dan's life and yours.I enjoyed visiting your home anf the conversations we had.I cared for both you and Dan.God Bless you.My thoughts are with you.

Rene Melchers

April 30, 2013

A long time Fellow Rotarian and Past District Governor to who we all can aspire to. We appreciate your contribution to Rotary and Service Above Self. You will be missed by your club, your community and by all of those whom you have inspired over the years. My sincerest condolences to family, friends and fellow Rotarians.

District Governor
District 7040

Stephen McBath

April 30, 2013

Sorry for your loss. Your family is in our thoughts and prayers. Stephen McBath , Roger McBath and family.

April 30, 2013

Carolyn, I am so very sorry to hear that Dan passed away. Please know that you are in my thoughts and prayers. Please let me know if there is anything I can do to help you.
Ann and Ellis Pike