After years in a wheelchair, Daniel Joseph Kochan, 31 is now running freely in heaven. Dan passed away at home in Kellnersville, WI on June 28, 2021 surrounded by his family.
Dan was born in Fond du Lac, WI on July 14, 1989 to Joseph Kochan and Kathleen (Steeber) Kochan.
At the age of six Dan was diagnosed with the rare genetic disease Ataxia Telangiectasia (A-T). The disease gradually took away his ability to walk and by the age of ten Dan was using a wheelchair. The disease affected the motor functions of his hands, legs, eyes and speech but it never affected his quick wit and his ability to learn and appreciate life.
Dan graduated from Fond du Lac High School in 2008. After graduation, Dan became more independent and moved into his own apartment in Kellnersville. He then started going to the Manitowoc YMCA. Not only did he gain strength there, but he also gained many “Y” friends. Dan was a huge fan of anything WWE, DC, Marvel, or Star Wars related. He enjoyed going to WWE events with his Dad and Comic Con conventions with his Mom where he would dress in his favorite character costumes.
Dan also loved taking road trips whether near or far. He loved going to concerts, plays and festivals, especially the ones his sisters were involved in. Dan loved going to the movie theatre to see the latest action movie. He frequented them so often that the staff knew what his favorite snack was. In March of 2020, he was diagnosed with T-PLL Leukemia. After chemo treatments, and weeks in the hospital, Dan made the decision to come home on Hospice. His family then spent every weekend possible together going places or just hanging out around the campfire telling stories and making memories. The weekends usually ended with his sister’s two dogs, Motzy and Otie snuggling up with him on the couch.
Living life in a wheelchair can be limiting as there are always hurdles to overcome, but Dan was always optimistic and always had a smile on his face. He left a positive impact on the lives of everyone that he met.
Dan is survived by his father Joe Kochan, Fond du Lac; mother, Kathy Kochan, Kellnersville; sisters: Michelle Kochan, Fond du Lac; and Angela (Luke) Rankin, Madison. He is further survived by his grandmothers: Lorraine Kochan, Manitowoc; and Evelyn Steeber, Kellnersville; his aunts and uncles: Steve Kochan, Chuck Kochan, Ginny (George) Mozal, Rick Steeber, Kris (Jerry) Omernick, Mark Steeber, Lisa Corey; and his cousins: Justin Mozal, Ariel and Libby Steeber, Courtney and Jake Omernick. He is also survived by Patricia Beyer, Fond du Lac. Pat was his personal aide throughout his school years and remained a good friend after.
Dan was preceded in death by his grandfathers: Donald Kochan, and Richard Steeber; and his aunts: Lynn Kochan and Amy Cayemburg Steeber.
A visitation will be held from 3pm to 7pm on Wednesday, July 7, 2021 at the Reinbold & Pfeffer Family Funeral Home, 1124 Main Street, Kellnersville. Following the visitation, a Celebration of Life will begin with Deacon Dan Gray. Family and friends are also invited to reflect on Dan’s life. In lieu of flowers, memorials can be made to: A-T Children’s Project at: www.atcp.org Online condolences may be expressed at www.lakeshorefamilyfuneralhomes.com
The family would like to offer a special thank you to all the care team members from Sharon S. Richardson Hospice. A special thanks to Jeremy, Jessica, Rachel, Elizabeth, Bonnie, and Sami. We are forever grateful for the care and compassion you showed Dan and our family during his months on Hospice.
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