Michael F. O’Daniel, Sr.

Michael F. O’Daniel, Sr.

April 14, 1940 – March 11, 2020


Michael F. O’Daniel, born in Evansville, IN to Bernard and Elizabeth O’Daniel, was the second oldest of six children.  Siblings included Kate, Tim, Maureen, Kevyne, and Colleen.  Mike spent his childhood and school years in Evansville where he was involved in Boy Scouts and played basketball.  Exploring a call to religious life, he attended Saint Meinrad Seminary and School of Theology in St. Meinrad, IN for two years.  He graduated from Reitz Memorial High School in Evansville, IN in 1958.

In 1958, at the age of 18, Mike’s family moved to Omaha, NE to purchase an Oldsmobile dealership in downtown Omaha that later became O’Daniel Oldsmobile.  The dealership then moved to the site we know today at 78th and Dodge and became O’Daniel Motor Center, followed by the current O’Daniel Honda.

Mike was in the Army Reserves for 6 years, attended Marquette University for a year, then transferred to Creighton University in Omaha, NE where he was a member of the Alpha Kappa Psi Fraternity and earned a B.S. in Business Administration.  Through the years Mike’s role in the family business increased, and he became more involved in the auto dealership industry serving as President of the Nebraska New Car Dealers Association for a term.  Upon his father Bernard’s retirement, he purchased the dealership and ran it until his retirement.  He was an astute businessman and enjoyed getting to know his employees and helping them out in difficult times.  His two sons Matt and Mike Jr. now own and operate O’Daniel Honda continuing the family legacy.

Mike met the love of his life, Barb Heimrod, at an Aksarben Ball event and they married in 1966 after a short courtship and many travels to and from Kansas City where Barb was attending Kansas University in Lawrence.  During their courtship, they loved to socialize and enjoy the Kansas City nightlife, The Plaza, and Westport.  Mike and Barb have been married for 54 years.

Mike was a dedicated family man to Barb and their four children: Mike Jr., Helen, Matt and Aloise “Loycee” and his seven grandchildren.  He was a loving man of strong will and values, quick wit, many hobbies and even more stories!  Over the years his hobbies included owning race horses, hunting, fishing, owning and showing Quarter horses, listening to country, bluegrass and blues music, photography, ham radio, home brewing, gardening, western and Indian art, story and joke telling, boating, and lake life in Lake of the Ozarks with his kids and grandkids.

Mike loved supporting his wife and kids in their interests, activities, hopes and dreams.  As a family member, if you expressed an interest in something – he went beyond to make it happen and happen big!  Throughout the progression of Alzheimer’s, Mike maintained a gentle spirit, big sense of humor, quick wit and storytelling.

To our hero: the best Husband, Father and Grandfather/Papa anyone could ever ask for, rest in peace – you have earned it!  From the bottom of our hearts, thank you, we will miss you and will carry the memories of you forever in us!  We love you!

Survived by wife, Barbara J.; children: Michael F. O’Daniel, Jr. (Amy), Helen Reese (Sean), Matthew B. O’Daniel (Stacy) and Aloise “Loycee” E. O’Daniel; seven grandchildren; and sisters: Maureen Mangan (Don), Kevyne O’Daniel and Colleen Flanders.

Family will receive friends Monday, March 16th from 5pm to 7pm, at the West Center Chapel.  The VIGIL SERVICE has been canceled.   PRIVATE FAMILY MASS.  MEMORIAL MASS to be announced at a later date.  INTERMENT: Mt. Calvary Cemetery-Elkhorn, NE.  In lieu of flowers, memorials are suggested to the Alzheimer’s Association.


The above link a video recording of the funeral mass that was Wednesday Morning.








  • Judy I pson Posted March 12, 2020 7:11 pm

    Sorry to hear of your families loss

  • David L. Runnells Posted March 13, 2020 12:00 am

    RIP Mike. All my condolences to your family.

    Dave Runnells.

  • Tavi Baker Posted March 13, 2020 12:11 pm

    May his family be blessed with many fond memories of this kind man. In 1982 when my young husband was employed at O’Daniel Olds and passed away suddenly, he and Bernie were instrumental in providing cars for the funeral and an outpouring of support to me and my children. Top of the shelf people. He lived a life of sharing. Rest in Peace.

  • Skip Triwbridge Posted March 15, 2020 2:38 pm

    Mike and Bernie were two dealers that I always respected, were good honest people who valued their employees and customers. My interactions with both of them through the NNCTDA were always enjoyable. I’m sorry for your loss Matt and Mike.

  • Michael Phelps Posted March 16, 2020 6:47 am

    I’m so sorry to hear of Mike’s passing. I enjoyed getting to know him over the years. I always thought he was a gentleman and a great storyteller. He will be missed.

  • Sandy Turner Posted March 16, 2020 3:36 pm

    Barb – you and your family are in our thoughts and prayers. I will fondly remember Mike’s quick wit and sharp business mind. You have many friends who care deeply about you Barb..Please reach out when the time is right for you

  • Imelda Severina Martin Woodward Posted March 20, 2020 10:40 am

    My deepest sympathies for the family.
    Michael was my second cousin.
    Elizabeth daughter of Alios and Marie Brune were my first
    I am 88 years old and the daughter of Anthony and Severina Brune Martin

  • Michael Keys Sr Posted April 2, 2020 6:00 pm

    He was a great man.

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