OBITUARY

Daniel Gomez

May 15, 1958April 28, 2021
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Luis Daniel Gomez (Danny) was born at Mount Sinai Hospital in New York City, New York. His mother, Ramona Maria DeJesus, had immigrated to the United States from Puerto Rico and worked as an RN at Mount Sinai. His father, Joseph Michael Gomez, had immigrated to the United States from Cuba and had a career as a security guard at Manufacturers Hanover Bank & Trust in New York City. Danny grew up in the Bronx borough of New York City. Sadly, his mother, Ramona, was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis while she was pregnant with Danny. Due to Ramona’s illness, Danny’s parents sent him to school a year early. Thus, though he was born in late May or early June, 1959, his recorded birth date became May 15, 1958. Danny remembered a long walk to school on his own as a very little boy.

Danny was multi-lingual, fluent in both English and Spanish. He felt that speaking Spanish kept him safer growing up in the Bronx. In addition, Danny spoke some French.

As a young boy, Danny helped to care for his mother, learning nursing skills. Danny’s mother, sadly, passed away when he was only 17. Danny enjoyed the bond he had with his father, as they lived together after the loss of Ramona. Sadly, Danny’s father, then retired, passed away of a heart attack, when Danny was not quite 21 years old. Danny had started college while living with his father, and he continued his studies while still covered by his father’s social security. Despite these early losses, Danny was able to put his clear artistic talent to use, working as a window display artist in New York City. From his teens and into adulthood, he was also an active and talented dancer.

Danny benefitted from family ties with his older brother Richard, as well as with his older sister Carmen Josephine Bonaparte and his older brother Joseph Gomez, Jr., both from his father’s first marriage to Rigmor Christensen. Danny described Joseph, Jr., as a wonderful teenaged brother, who would play with him, throw him on his shoulder, and flip him over his back. Danny was proud of his sister, Carmen, who had worked as a fashion model, photographer’s stylist, and window display artist as well. Danny grew up very close in age to his nieces Lisa Jo Bonaparte and Pia Donna Bonaparte, and he enjoyed childhood family visits with them and their parents, Carmen and Otto Bonaparte.

While still a young man, Danny decided to leave New York City behind and head to the western United States. He lived for a while in San Antonio, Texas, but ultimately he settled in Denver, CO. A very compassionate man, Danny worked as a Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA). He also did some reception work for an attorney, utilizing his Spanish-language skills. Danny resumed college classes in Denver, working on an associate degree. Danny enjoyed gardening, tending decorative flower beds at his home. And he was a cat-enthusiast, enjoying the companionship of his Himalayan cat Oreo.

Danny was active in the country-western dance scene in Denver. He was a sought-after and admired dancer, inventing a hybrid salsa-two-step. Patrons lined up at Charlie’s Nightclub of Denver to be able to dance with Danny. Danny and his dance partners would receive applause.

Danny was very wise about people, and he put this to use sponsoring hundreds of men and women in the Cocaine Anonymous (CA) Fellowship of Colorado. Danny was awarded a 10-year CA sobriety chip in 2021. As Danny sponsored others to help them overcome addiction, he effectively saved many lives. Through his service to the recovery community, Danny developed many dear and devoted friends. A people lover, Danny was very kind and could be very charming as well. He made people feel special and loved.

Danny enjoyed months of planning and then hosting an annual sobriety party, with dancing, to celebrate sometimes his May birthday and sometimes the June LGBTQ Pride event.

Danny appreciated the times his East-Coast family visited him in Denver. He and his friends went out of their way to be fantastic hosts, escorting the family out to the mountains of Colorado to see the sites. Danny’s brother Joseph and niece Marie visited in 2009, and his niece Lisa visited in 2017. Danny flew East to visit the family in 2009 for Halloween, his favorite holiday. The family had a dance party at Carmen and Otto’s, with all the nieces dancing in turn with Danny.

In Danny’s later years, he suffered some strokes, which affected his ability to work in nursing. After some small strokes, over a decade, he had two major strokes in the fall of 2020. Danny survived for another 6 months, as his many devoted friends rallied around him, visiting him at Denver North Care Center or calling and writing regularly. His brother Joseph and niece Lisa kept in close touch with weekly calls and Facetimes.

Danny passed away very peacefully on Wednesday, April 28, 2021, at Denver North Care Center. In his last half-hour of life, he was surrounded by loving friends, including Mark Deckard, Tina Larry, Anton Montgomery, and Dan Doleger.

Danny is survived by his sister Carmen Bonaparte of Branford, CT, and his brother Joseph Gomez of Cape Coral, FL, as well as multiple nieces, nephews, and great-nieces and great-nephews. In addition, he is survived by a large recovery community of friends in Denver and many other devoted friends.

In honor of Danny’s memory, please consider making a donation to The Center on Colfax (serving the LGBTQ+ community); Rainbow Alley (serving LBGTQ youth ages 11-21); or Denver Health Foundation (serving myriad health needs of the Denver community).

Services

LIVESTREAM SERVICE
8 May

Memorial Service

3:30 pm

Olinger Crown Hill

Check back for live streaming link

Pavilion of Reflection
7777 West 29th Avenue
Wheat Ridge, Colorado 80033

Memories

Daniel Gomez

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Tina Larry

May 7, 2021

Danial was my best friend we did everything together we most liked to go thrift store shopping together. We use to fuss at each other like a couple and then hug after words he was my First sponsor in the CA fellowship and love to read the book to. Me we would dance at ever event they had and he loved to eat i will miss him so much but truly greatful to have held his hand during is last breath i will forever love yiu Danial G

Mark Nelson

May 6, 2021

Dannie came into my life in 2005 when I attended the Sunday noon meeting at the big house looking for a sponsor. When Dannie started to share, my friend Kathleen kicked me under the table and said “ this is the one “!! He knew the Big Book from front to back, left to right, upside down . Dannie stopped using by being in the rooms and listening to other people’s stories, learning from them. He was street smart. The time he spent with me changed my world and I will be forever grateful to him. You were one of a kind Dannie Gomez and I will miss you dearly.

FROM THE FAMILY

Danny takes the stair-climb challenge in Castle Rock, Colorado, on February 20, 2016

FROM THE FAMILY

Danny's got all the right moves at a family dance party, Halloween weekend, 2009

FROM THE FAMILY

Danny takes the stair-climb challenge in Castle Rock, Colorado, on February 20, 2016

FROM THE FAMILY

Danny's got all the right moves at a family dance party, Halloween weekend, 2009