HANOVERTON – Danny Lee Kibler, 73, of Hanoverton, died on Tuesday January 11, 2022 after a short illness. He will be missed not only by his family but by an entire community. Dan was born on April 8, 1948 in Canton, Ohio. He resided all his life in Hanoverton. A small town he loved and was very proud of.
He is survived by his wife of 51 years Becky (McKarns) Kibler, daughter Tracy (Bill) McKenzie, son Ben Kibler, daughter Ashley (Zach) Kennedy. Five grandchildren, Brandon McKenzie, Bryce McKenzie, Bailey McKenzie, Laney Kennedy and Lincoln Kennedy. Mother Betty (Kibler) Hawthorne, brothers Dale (Bev) Kibler, Dean (Betty) Kibler, Richard (Kathy) Kibler, Donald (Kris) Kibler, sister Kathy (Rod) Sanlo, sister-in-law Sue (Bill) Kibler. He was predeceased by his father Robert Kibler and his brother Bill Kibler.
Dan was a dedicated educator, entrepreneur, public servant and family man. Dan graduated from United High School in 1966 and Youngstown State University in 1970. In his early years, he drove tractor-trailers for Snyder Construction. He also ran heavy equipment for Haley Construction and built numerous golf courses. Dan began his teaching career at the Mahoning County Career & Technical Center in July 1973. He spent the next 41 years teaching and mentoring students in the Small Engine Repair Program, retiring in June 2014. At During his tenure, Dan received numerous honours. In 1990 he was chosen by his peers to be a Jennings Fellow. His “30 Tips for Marketing Your Program” was published in the Vocational Education Journal of the American Vocational Association. In 2003, Dan received the Ohio ACTE Career Technical Teacher of the Year award. In 2004, he was recognized as an Outstanding Educator by the Institute of Industrial Information for Education. Throughout his career he held many positions in the union and was known for his pragmatic approach to education. He was also an integral part of the school’s management team.
Although he deserved all his professional recognition, the most important thing to Dan was his students. He was the epitome of a great teacher. While being a father figure to many of his “children”, he still managed to hold them accountable. Dan was known to use his time and personal resources to travel with students across the country to attend youth club events, where his students won local, state, and national awards. Until his retirement, Dan picked up struggling students or students without reliable transportation almost every day to make sure they were at school. Dan has mentored many teachers and administrators on what it means to be a dedicated educator and truly believed in the virtue of hard work.
Dan’s work ethic was unwavering; he worked evenings and weekends throughout his teaching career with his stepfather Mervin (Mac) McKarns at McKarns Tractor. After retiring from teaching, Dan took over the operation himself and for the past six years his grandson Bryce worked with him. Bryce will treasure the memories, experiences and skills he learned from his grandfather. Dan really loved what he did and never really thought of it as work. Dan was not idle in spirit and was happiest when he was busiest and surrounded by family and friends.
In addition to his professional accomplishments, Dan was also a dedicated public servant and a pillar of the community. He served on Hanoverton Village Council for over 30 years before being elected and sworn in as mayor in January 2000, a title he held for 22 years until his death. Dan was instrumental in setting up the sewer, and he planned and took great pride in many community events, especially the Community Roast Corn.
Some of Dan’s interests and accomplishments: United Local Wall of Fame 2012 (Academic Career Achievement), Hanoverton Fire Department, City Council, Member and President of Young Farmers, Active Member of Hanoverton Presbyterian Church ( the same church he and his wife were married in), Church Deacon and Usher, Antique Tractor Puller and an avid reader (he always had his corner with him).
Of all the things stated above, Dan’s greatest love was his family. He had unwavering support for anything and everything his children and grandchildren were involved in. We will miss his phone calls after every event to say how proud he was and what a great job we did…regardless of the event. Most importantly, his contagious smile will be missed. For those who were lucky enough to know Dan, they knew he was reluctant to take credit for all the great things he was instrumental in and did for his students, his community and his family. He was a humble man who always put others first and would give anything to put a smile on someone’s face. There is a hole in our hearts, a tear in our eyes, but a smile on our face for knowing him.
A scholarship fund is being established in Danny’s name for a deserving United graduate. Please make donations in Dan’s memory to the United Community Scholarship Foundation, United High School 8143 State Route 9 Hanoverton, Ohio 44423.
A private family funeral service will be held on Wednesday, January 19, 2022 and Dan will be interred at Grove Hill Cemetery in Hanoverton, Ohio. A video recording will be available on the Stark Memorial website under his obituary after the service. Due to the large number of people wishing to pay their respects and the current covid situation, we are planning a celebration of Dan’s life at a later date.
Arrangements are handled by Stark Memorial Funeral Home and Cremation Services.
To view Dan’s obituary, send condolences or order flowers, visit www.starkmemorial.com.