The Enid News and Eagle, Enid, OK

Local and State News

September 13, 2013

Unique camo casket made for late firefighter

ENID, Okla. — Toni Luetjen said she wasn’t sure what to think of her father’s casket when she first saw it.

The camouflage-painted redwood coffin, featuring deer antler initials, didn’t meet her standards as a self-described “hoity-toity” person.

“I looked at it and thought, ‘Oh mother, what have you done?’” she said. “The second time I looked at it, I said, ‘It’s absolutely perfect. It’s exactly what he’d want.’ I just love it.”

Danny Weldon, retired Enid Fire Department lieutenant, was laid to rest Friday in his special coffin, with an escort from the department he served for 21 years.

Weldon died Sunday, but had been ill for several years after suffering from a stroke, Luetjen said.

She said her father was an avid outdoorsman, a bow hunter and often had his picture in the newspaper with animals he took on his hunts.

“He never wanted a foo-foo casket,” Luetjen said. “He was like ‘Don’t be blowing a bunch of money.’”

The casket was made over several months by a neighbor and friend, Ron Foster.

“He said he would make it for my mom whenever she was ready. She told him to just take his time,” Luetjen said. “He said, ‘how do you want it designed?’ And she said she didn’t know. He said, ‘I’ll just pray about it,’ and it just came to him all at once.”

She said her dad always had been an outdoors type, the opposite of her mother, Linda. She said her mother’s side of the house had angels and mirrors. Her dad’s side had trophies from hunts and antlers on the wall.

“It’s pretty awesome,” Luetjen said of the casket. “I love it. The funeral home (Anderson-Burris) said they’ve had many, many comments on it.”

She said the camouflage casket is something her father would appreciate.

“He’s going out the way he should — in style,” she said. “In a camouflage casket.”

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