In Memory of Dan Haley

Dan Haley (1964 – 2023)
SJCC English


I was informed in early September 2023 that Dan Haley had passed away.  I was and am saddened.  He left us far too soon.  He was a wonderful friend and colleague; he worked at SJCC from the early 2000s to 2018.  I remember when I worked at the Reading and Writing Center, SJCC, Dan was always enthusiastically recommending the Center to his students.  Beyond that, almost every semester, he recommended his higher-level writing students to be student tutors there.  He was positively involved in campus life beyond just teaching.  In my early days at SJCC, he subbed for one of my classes for about two weeks or so.  When I came back to class, the students had been fully engaged and working during those two weeks.  They spoke highly of Dan’s teaching skills.  I always appreciated his help at this time; I truly needed him.  When I think of Dan, I will remember his smile and sense of humor.  He is missed.  I am grateful, though, for having known him.  A great, strong man.  Rest in peace, my friend.

— From Leslie Rice, SJCC ESL/ENG

We know what a dramatic character Dan was because being a thespian was one of his favorite activities. In addition to drama, Dan loved history and literature, leading him into his long career as an English teacher, most notably at San Jose City College. While his prickly nature also made him seem unapproachable, those people who persevered and made it into his circle of friends found a man with a heart of gold in their midst. He was fiercely loyal and kind, yet bluntly reminded us of reality when necessary. He loved great coffee and earthenware mugs; good food; urban myths; telling odd, yet crazy stories and then laughing about them or people’s reactions to them; and nature, particularly California’s rugged coastline and forested areas. Not everyone knew how much of an animal lover he was, but he had his rabbit, Boo, for almost 20 years and gave love to all animals, especially horses.

Dan’s passing was sudden, but he is not suffering any longer. If you would like to honor him, please join us in donating to caring for animals the way Dan wanted. American Humane is an organization that focuses on animals’ safety and welfare in filmmaking but also emergency response and from farm animals to pets. Moreover, they have a strong connection with the conservation community across our nation. This seemed to be the best choice to honor him, so please make a donation in Dan Haley’s name if you are so inclined.

— From Bonnie Hsia, SJCC English