Danny Katzman passed away on August 14, 2022. He was born in Odessa, Texas on December 1, 1960 to Israeli emigrants Arie and Ziporah Katzman and grew up playing with bullfrogs, racing slot cars, and listening to Bob Dylan. He attended Permian High School in Odessa, then attended the University of Texas in Austin. On a geology field trip to Taos, he fell in love with New Mexico skies and rocks and decided to move after receiving his bachelor’s degree in Geology in 1985.
In Taos, he taught himself to fly fish in remote streams, learned to taste the earth, and to appreciate the culture and people. He continued his education at the University of New Mexico where he earned his Master’s degree with honors in Geology and Earth Sciences.
Danny’s passion for the environment spanned a thirty-year career, leading him from the New Mexico Environment Department, to Los Alamos National Laboratory, to Sealaska Technical Services, part of N3B where he recently retired from his role as Chief Scientist and Program Manager for Groundwater Remediation for N3B’s Water Program. Danny’s long standing knowledge of the environment and his unique ability to transform complex topics into understandable information made him the perfect interface to support staff and outreach programs.
In September 2013, Danny married Darcy Pedersen, and they, along with Darcy’s son Ean, shared a loving and adventurous life together, often revolving around food.
Danny’s zest for life was apparent in everything he did, from providing site tours at work to pressing autumn apples for cider at home. His garden was always bountiful with uncommon and surprising vegetables. He had an insatiable need for good music. He liked learning new things and doing things that would connect him to the earth in some way. Recently, he began carving spoons after learning about it from his nephew Matt. He’d also begun volunteering for a local organic farm, wanting to contribute to causes that helped the local community. Danny loved exploring unusual and unique people, places, and things, always making new friends wherever he went. He had a large, unmistakable presence that could not be ignored, and he will be missed dearly.
He is preceded in death by his parents Arie and Ziporah Katzman and his brother Ofer Katzman. He is survived by his loving wife Darcy Katzman and his stepson Ean Nickols; sister Orna Berkowitz (David) in Seattle; cousins OriAnne Philips in Dallas, and Adi Cohen (Rachel) in Los Angeles; niece Allie Hankins in Portland and nephew Matt Hankins (Tahlia) in Seattle; many beloved grand-nieces and nephews and second cousins, and family members in Israel and in California. And many, many friends.
A celebration of Danny’s life will be held at Bathtub Row Brewing on October 1, 2022 from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. Please come with your stories of Danny to share and an appetite for tacos.
Contributions in Danny’s name may be made to Clusterbusters (clusterbusters.org), an organization dedicated to research on cluster headaches (of which Danny was a long time sufferer) and Trout Unlimited, to help protect our rivers, streams, and watersheds for future fly-fishers like Danny.