The Obit For Danny Doyle

Howard James ‘Danny’ Doyle

The Stillwater News Press


Howard James “Danny” Doyle, 87, of Stillwater, died Tuesday, Dec. 14, 2004, in his home.

A rosary service will be tonight at 7 in St. John’s Catholic Church. Services will be Friday at 10 a.m. in St. John’s Catholic Church with Father Ken Harder officiating. Interment will be in Sunset Memorial Gardens, Stillwater. Strode Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements.

He was born Jan. 24, 1917, in McLoud, to Samuel Addison Doyle and Agnes Mae (Ewell) Doyle. He attended school in McLoud, graduated from Dale High School and from Oklahoma State University (A&M) in 1940. He married Leora Virginia Hardeman in Hutchison, Kan., in the summer of 1938.

While excelling in basketball and baseball at Oklahoma A&M, he was given the nickname “Danny” by Otis Wile, then the university’s sports information director, because of his Irish heritage and the aggressive play that made him one of the most popular players of his era. Coached by the legendary Hank Iba, who he called “Mr. Iba” throughout his life, he earned seven letters, four in basketball and three in baseball. He was the battery-mate for Allie Reynolds and both went on to successful careers in professional baseball.

He played for the Boston Red Sox before being drafted into the Army Air Corps during World War II (1944-46). Due to a service-connected disability he was unable to continue his playing career. He returned to Oklahoma A&M where he became an assistant to Hank Iba. He became head basketball and baseball coach for Auburn University in 1948-49. He joined the Boston Red Sox as a full-time scout in 1949 and signed many high profile players, including Roger Clemons, Jim Lonborg, both Cy Young award winners and Ellis Burks. He was named National Scout of the Year in 1988 by Major League Baseball. He was one of the first ex-players to be inducted into the Oklahoma State University Baseball Hall of Fame.

He was born the year before the Boston Red Sox won their last World Championship in 1918 and died just two months after the Red Sox won their next World Championship in 2004. In addition to his lifelong involvement with athletics as player, coach and scout, he was an avid fisherman, hunter, gardener and family man.

He was predeceased by his parents, brothers, Newell, Frank, Lee and sisters, Mary and Emma.

He is survived by his wife, two sons and a daughter, Hardy and his wife, Barbara of Fayetteville, Ark., Tom and his wife, Nancy, of Stillwater and Dana Nelson of Edmond; eight grandchildren, Lisa, Paige, Trent, Colin and Kelly, Stacey, Tara and Dan; nine great-grandchildren, two brothers, Bill and Luther and one sister, Helen.