Dank’s death is ‘an end of an era’

Rep. David Dank

Rep. David Dank

Rep. David Dank, who represented northwest Oklahoma City for over 20 years, has died.

He was 76.

Details of his death were not immediately known, but House Minority leader Scott Inman said Dank was found inside his home Friday.

“It’s the end of an era,” said Sen. David Holt, R-OKC, who went on to say David and his wife, Odilia Mary Dank, were staples of the Republican party long before it became the majority party in Oklahoma. “Between he and his wife, they served Oklahoma City for a quarter century and came to define what Republicanism really stood for in that part of town.”

Dank won reelection last year, holding onto the District 85 seat he entered in 2007. Odilia served the district from 1994 until 2006, when she reached the term limit. She passed away in 2013.

“They were really [Republican] party activists before they were elected officials,” Holt said. “Northwest Oklahoma City has been one of the bastions of Republicanism, even before the party grabbed the majority.”

The news of Dank’s death caused politicians to pause from partisanship as House Democrats quickly offered a word of condolence. Rep. Jason Dunnington, D-OKC, said the news hit the capitol hard.

“It’s a sad loss,” Dunnington said. “This is not an ‘R’ or a ‘D’ thing; we lost a member of our body.”

Ben Felder

Ben is an urban affairs reporter covering local government and education in Oklahoma City. He lives in OKC with his wife, Lori, and son, Satchel. Ben holds a masters in new media journalism from Full Sail University and is an OKC transplant from Kansas City, Mo. Twitter: @benfelder_okg

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