David Odell

Obituary of David Roger Odell

Dr. David Roger Odell (April 9, 1931-June 9, 2024) David Roger Odell, age 93, of Richfield, died Sunday June 9, 2024. Private interment at Fort Snelling National Cemetery will be held on August 28, 2024. In Lieu of flowers, memorials preferred to the family or NC Little Hospice. David was the sixth child born to William F. and Ida Blair Odell on April 9, 1931, in Minneapolis. He spent his early life in Chaska, and summers in Excelsior, Minnesota with his siblings on Lake Minnetonka along with lots of DuToit, Klammer, Flink and Ottinger cousins. Excelsior is where he would later settle and raise his children. He attended school in Chaska, graduating from high school in 1949. He played basketball for Chaska and was in the Chaska Drum and Bugle Corp, playing drums, and his beloved helicon bass (Tuba). In 1953 he married Joan Olson, and they had 3 children. They later divorced. He served on the Excelsior Jaycees and served on the Board of Deacons for the Excelsior Congregational Church. He attended college at Westminster in Fulton, Missouri and the University of Minnesota, graduating with a Doctor of Dental Surgery degree in 1955. He practiced dentistry in Excelsior, Mn for 25 years. His favorite joke about dentistry: “When is it time to go to the dentist? Tooth-hurty!” After Dental school he enlisted in the United States Army serving from 1955-1957. He attended boot camp in San Antonio, Texas and proudly served in the Army Dental Corp at Fort Ord, California earning the rank of Captain. Dave was passionate about music. He enjoyed a wide variety of genres. He would play classical music and Broadway showtunes, but his love was for New Orleans Jazz. His music could be heard across the lake through his 3 “Altec Voice of the Theater” speakers that were designed for use in movie theaters but graced the living room in the house on Lafayette Avenue in Excelsior. In 1965 he became acquainted with the Hall Brothers Jazz Band. In March of 1966, along with band members, he opened the Hall Brothers Emporium of Jazz in Mendota, Minnesota, eventually opening an adjacent lounge and the Mariner Restaurant where New Orleans music and Cajun cuisine was served up simultaneously during their famous Sunday brunches. Bus trips to Vikings games were enjoyed by lounge customers, friends and family. Dave’s daughter Karen worked with Dave at the Emporium and shared his love of jazz, occasionally singing duets at the end of the bar on Fats Waller’s “If I were You” and he did his own rendition of “The Whistler and his Dog”. During these years Dave enjoyed meeting jazz musicians from around the world including the New Orleans Rascals from Osaka Japan, Kustbandet from Sweden, Los Zorros Plateados from Mexico, Preservation Hall Band from New Orleans to name a few. He enjoyed meeting people from many walks of life who also loved jazz music and Cajun cuisine. Many he met there became lifelong friends. Recently, a letter from Jun Kobayashi from 1971 summed it up: “Dear Jazz Friends…We learned a lot more things than ever during this tour, American Traditional Jazz is the World Language. It gives us a wonderful spirit of love, sincere and human.” David was the owner of Territorial Sales and Marketing as his next adventure. Most notably representing Chef Paul Prudhomme of K-Paul’s New Orleans Restaurant fame to distribute his “Cajun Magic” line of spices. Dave loved working for Paul and reluctantly retired at age 86 when Chef Paul passed away. David was the youngest of the children of William F and Ida Blair Odell. He was preceded in death by his parents and five siblings, William, George (Bud), Wallace, Richard and Ruth (Toots) Bruhn, nephew David Lee Odell and best friend Ken Mayo. Survived by loving wife of 45 years, Patricia, children William,Donald, Karen (John Urgo),stepdaughter Gail Cunningham (Steve Zabe) and honorary fifth sibling Jeff Forland. Grandchildren Amber Odell, Jules Swaner (Joshua) Allison Mill and great-granddaughter Athena Swaner. Special friends Mike and Char Polad, Excelsior coffee group, many friends, nieces and nephews and extended family. The remainder of his years were spent with his loving wife Patricia at their home in Richfield, Minnesota. He enjoyed Patty’s Garden and the loving home she created for them. During this time, they loved walking, going out to restaurants with the Polads and to lunches at the Barnes and Noble Bookstore Coffee Shop at the Galleria where the staff and manager became dear friends.




A Memorial Tree was planted for David
We are deeply sorry for your loss ~ the staff at Cremation Society of Minnesota
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