Dan Langhans

John Hall and Dan Langhans

passed away this morning, 
February 24, 2015, in his sleep.
Dan was a legend in his own time.  A true gentleman, dog handler and great man.
Our sport was lucky to have him spend his time with us.  

From John Hall - There will not be any visitation or funeral service.  
A celebration of life for Dan Langhans will take place at the Heritage House located at 21225 Route 14, Harvard IL.   The date and time will be Saturday, February 28th 2015,11:30 to 3:30. Please bring along any photos and/or stories you would like to share.  

***The celebration of life is a luncheon and that a head count will be needed by Feb. 26th 4:00 pm.  Please contact John Hall  by email at jehhunt@sbcglobal.net or 773 502 4504****

 Marie has requested that flowers not be sent but to send donations to the cancer society of your choice or to the Central States Springer Spaniel Club.

Messages of condolence can be sent to:
Marie Langhans
17109 Lincoln Road
Harvard  IL  60033

If you would like to email a message and/or photo to be posted here please email it to ess_essft@earthlink.net

 Even if you did not know him personally, you know OF him, of his success on and off the field and his impact on our sport.  
He was a mentor and a friend to many and his presence in all of our lives will be sorely missed.
From Deb Schoene's email

Click her for a link to photos compiled by Connie Kieckhefer shown at the Dan's celebration of his life.


Photos from Bob Iversen from facebook below

from Bob from fb
from bob from db
from Bob from fb  
Dan and  Jim
Ray and Dan

 1987 National Amateur in Mt Sterling Ohio

from Bob from fb  
from Bob from fb
from Bob from fb

March 16

Dan did more for people entering the Field Trial game than anyone, he encouraged , taught and supported. I wish I had known him longer.

My heart goes out to Marie, Rest in Peace your Holiness.

Alex and Mary Kerr

March 6

Mrs Langhans, It is pretty obvious to see what a great man and friend Dan must have been by how his many friends stayed so close during his last weeks. Sorry for your loss. Leaman, John, Jess and Franz sorry you lost such a great friend

Chris Jensen

March 1

At the Hall of Fame trial banquet the new Tennessee Volunteer ESS Club presented an honor to Dan Langhans. The club did not realize that Dan was ill. They did not present this honor because Dan died, but because he lived. Not just because he lived, but because of the way he lived.

Not that Dan wasn't a fierce competitor. For those of us that have had the honor to judge him, we will always understand that when after a call we might make when Dan said "Really??", he was not asking a question but was giving his opinion of that call and giving us the chance to correct our mistake :-).

Dan was a generous and caring individual. Generous not only with his time and land for training, but, when asked, generous with his advice and guidance. For some of us, not just with dogs, but in our everyday life.

We all know that Dan cared for Marie above all. He also had a special place in his heart for the "boys" that really grew up at Leprechaun Farm: John, Bob, Franz and more.

And of course the spaniels and the field trial game. Dan cared enough to always be a gentleman and always present himself as such.

 Dan's parents had great insight. His middle name was "King" and he will always be remembered as the King of the spaniels.

Dean Reinke

The first All Age placement I had, I totally  attribute to watching Mr. Langhans work, and doing/following, what I learned, by watching, him.
Dan, Always, had a kind word, or very helpful suggestion, on what to do.
And was Always Free with advice and encouragement, for everyone, to be able to enjoy this game.
The quote, I most heard from him, was:  “Luck has nothing to do with it, it is when opportunity, meets preparation”.
One is never really gone, as long as they are remembered.  And Dan, will be remembered for a very Long Time.
And by now, I am sure, Fred Neville, has ’showed’ him around.

Tom Radde

February 28

Marie,I was saddened to hear of Dan's passing.  Folks have been posting pictures on Facebook, which has triggered many great memories.  On that had me chuckle to myself was when Dan and I where talking about our dogs, which were both named Woody, at some point in the chat you mentioned how ridiculous the conversation sounded.

Marie, sorry for your loss, you are in my thoughts.

Peter & Mary Andersen

Marie, our heartfelt sympathy to you. The Springer Spaniel Field Trial sport has surely lost an icon and a gentleman.  We are so sad to hear of Dan's passing but we were fortunate to know Dan and be able to watch him run his many champions.  We will surely miss him!

Paul & Gloria VanHouten

Gunther and I had the privilege of getting to know Dan and Marie over the years. Dan always had a smile, a hug and a Hello recognizing us immediately no matter how much time passed between meetings. We were honored to have dinner with Dan and Marie at the Fall 2014 trials in the Mid-West. Dan took with him much of the heart and grace of our sport. He was a true gentleman, sportsman and competitor. We will miss him.

Gunther and Barb Boettcher

My condolences to you Marie. Dan, I remember the first time I met you and Marie by all the dogs tucked  away in the camper, and you and shuttling them up and down the field. I'll always remember the first time I came down to train with you. You taught me a lot about handling the Springers in the field. You gave some great advice. I'll always be grateful that I met you. And whenever I am in the field with my dogs you will be in my thoughts. Rest In Peace.

Donald Madriaga


Dan and Marie camping with their spaniels at the 2009 Tennesse Hall of Fame Trial.

CNFC/FC/AFC Parker Sir Roberts was inducted into the Hall of Fame that year.

Parker's owner gave a hilarious speech in honor of 'Parker' and Dan.
It was an honor to meet both of them.

 Janie Haworth


  I am having a hard time coming up with one story or one example of our friendship with Dan.

How do you summarize a mans life who has had such a positive impact on so many people?

A devoted husband, fierce competitor, gracious friend and generous professional.

Our thoughts and prayers are with you Marie during these trying times.

Jim, Denise and Deanna Keller


Morgan and Dan
2011 NOC - Morgan and Dan 
Dan Langhans comes to the line…

I was judging the Hall of Fame trial put on by the Volunteer English Springer Spaniel Club this past February. Dan Langhans had a number of dogs entered in the trial. The course was extremely heavy and very tough walking with brambles, briars and tangles.

Dog number 5 comes to the line under Dan.

I greet him with a friendly hello and he shakes my hand, asks how I am doing and sets his dog up. I give him the same instructions I give all handlers. All the while I am thinking who am I to be judging this icon of a spaniel man.

The dog is glued to Dan’s every movement. With a slight cast the dog heads off quartering. Dan struggles through about ten steps and stops, turns slightly to me and says, “Mark, I can’t do this anymore; I don’t want to hold up the trial.”   With a slight whistle, his dog is back at his side, the leash is put on and Dan turns and walks off the course.  I am left standing there thinking I may have just witnessed Dan’s last trial.

I have judged Dan at a number of trials throughout the years and have always witnessed the epitome of dog and handler coursing as a team. 

I will miss him dearly, Sophie and our boys will miss him dearly.   Blessed and cherished be his memory.

Mark Haglin

February 26

Dan always had a smile on his face, except when he was hollaring out of his motor home at Devoll...they'd walk out of their motor homes in the
am and curse each other, in a friendly war of words.  When I first witnessed this in Texas many years back, the movie Grumpy Old Men was at
the theatres.  I immediately, lovingly, gave them the nick name the GOM's.  Grumpy old men.

I learned alot from Dan, even tho he didn't directly teach me.  One of my first judging assignments was in the UP at Tilden Valley, and I got
to follow Dan down the course.  Rather intimidated that first time out.   I remember the fall of his first bird under me.  It fell a pretty good
distance out, from an open field into a small stand of trees.  His dog didn't make it on the first try, so we moved up a bit and he sent him
again.  Still, the dog did not make the fall...Dan, asked me where it was, and we moved up yet again.  Now you may be wondering why I would
have sent him on such a long retrieve.  Well, it wasn't that long.  I was just dumb on my first assignment.  And Mr. Langhans was using all he
could to keep his dog in the trial.  After that series, my co-judge came over to me and simply said " don't walk the pros out to the fall.  Any
further and you'd of been standing on it."  So, I learned.  Judged Dan many times after that.  He was always a gentleman.  He always greeted my
with a smile.

And I remember the rapport between Dan and Marie.  They had an understanding, as most husband and wives do.  I can still hear him
calling,  "Marie, where's my next dog?"  I can hear, "Marie..." (with emphasis and still a sly smile). And I can hear her answer which was not
the sweet chirp of a small bird, and if you know Marie, you know what I mean.  Yes, they had a rapport. We are so very much going to miss that.
But so glad I was around to judge him, know them together, and be greeted by them both.  RIP, Dan.  Hugs to you Marie.  I hope that all
that is written will bring smiles to you and warm feelings.  Cordially,
Hal and Nancy Standish

I was saddened to hear of Dan’s passing.

I’m quite new to the spaniel world but became aware of the aura of “The Langhans” very quickly. When their motorhome pulled in everyone came to
attention. It was as if the king and queen of ESS field trials had entered “the building”. There was no question as to why Langhans Team
was so special. You just had to see Dan work the dogs and listen to the stories. It was all very clear.

I’ll always remember the radio chatter at field trials between Dan and Marie. Dan: “Marie! Are you coming?”. Marie: “Yes Dan”. At one of the
Tilden Valley FT’s Marie was running Tommy. Marie got on the radio.   “Dan! Are you coming?” Everyone roared including Dan.

Marie, I hope the fond memories will help to ease your pain. You have my deepest sympathy.
Jill Miller

Marie we sat down with Dan and you at the Natl Am the Thursday morning with Arlene at breakfast time.  It was nice to remember when I first met Dan in 1984. What a fine man. It was really a pleasure to talk with him and you. We will keep both of you in our prayers.
- Roger Wilson

February 25

Dan campaigned my dog Winnimac’s Widgeon for two years in the late eighties.  He completed her FTC and in 1989 he handled her to a 1st place win in the 1989 Canadian National in Nova Scotia.  Dan was the calmest, most confident handler I have ever seen, which was exactly what Widgeon needed as she was a real handful.  Dan had her number though, and was always one step ahead of her.  Many people saw her potential but he was the only guy who could bring it out.  Words cannot express the appreciation I have for the job he did with her.

Not only was Dan a talented dog man, he was also a real gentleman of the sport.  Never did I hear him bad mouth a judge during our Sunday evening field trail recaps.  If Widgeon screwed up, he told me she screwed up.  If she did well, he told me she did well.  If he said nothing, I knew he felt he had been dealt a bad break, but he would never say a word against the judges or trial officials.  As a client I appreciated his attitude and I realize now that I never told him that.

So, thank you Dan, for everything you did!

Ed Anderson
Strathmore, Alberta

RIP Dan. Prayers to his wife and family. I had the honor of meeting Dan for the first time a few years ago at an Open National. I saw him in the lobby of the hotel and just stopped in my tracks. I did get a chance to speak with him a few times after that at some later Nationals and trials. I have a picture of him from the National in Maryland that I have hanging in my office that I will remember forever.
 The last time I saw Dan was at the fifth series of this year’s Amateur National. He was walking in the gallery and we had gotten to the end of the course. There was an ATV waiting for him and he had to walk across some though cover to get there. I put my arm under his and helped him to the ATV. I'm glad I got to do that. The word "Icon" is reserved for very special people that forever embody something in a clear and obvious way, they are a symbol or example of something. Dan Langhans was a true Icon of our sport.

Ted Lagala

Jeanne and I have been in the sport since the late 80’s.  Dan and Marie were respected names then,
and have never relinquished their image in our eyes.
Dan was truly a gentleman and a sportsman – with a wealth of knowledge.
Our best memory of this years National Open was sitting around the table in the evenings listening to his stories of dogs and people.
We will miss him.
Tom and Jeanne Nabity

The field trial community lost a tremendous individual this week. In addition to his outstanding success in the field, Dan Langhans was a gentleman and a great sportsman. I enjoyed the training sessions and hearing the stories of his experiences. We all owe a lot to Dan for his support and how he helped shape the sport. He made an impact on me and I will miss him.
Marie, I am truly sorry for your loss. My thoughts and prayers are with you.

Darrell Kurszewski

Marie I am grateful for the friendship of you and Dan. The biggest memory I have of Dan is when he introduced me at the Hall of Fame to accept the dedication for Jeff into the Hall. He called me his good friend, I was more emotional about that then anything--it was my highlight. I always look forward to the Nationals just to see you and Dan. He was always there to listen. Whenever I got frustrated with a situation, Jim Dobbs would say "What would Dan Langhans do?" Marie I will try, but there will only be one Dan Langhans. Rest in peace my friend.
My Prayers to you Marie,
Gary Breitbarth and Family

Some things I remember about Dan. He always had a way of drawing you in close when he shook your hand.
 He always referred to me as, “young man”.
I only had the opportunity to run a dog under Dan’s judgment once. It was the National Amateur Championship held at Deer Creek State Park in Ohio many years ago. I really wanted to have a strong showing and had a nice little dog Ivanhoe’s Abigail – but it was not to be.
Over the years Dan was more fortunate running dogs under my judgment: Rupert, Bruce, Keeler, Dan, Parker, Ace, Zinger, Chaun, Jerry, Widgeon, Coach, and many other nice animals whose names escape me at the moment.
I sure enjoyed being in the field with him over several decades. I know there are folks in the game much closer to him than I, and I am envious.
They say that by forty a man is responsible for his face. I believe Dan had a permanent smile etched into his features. Is there any doubt he enjoyed being out there…every minute of it. That is the lesson I will attempt to carry forward in Dan’s memory.
Bill Cosgrove
Ivanhoe Springer Spaniels

We are new to this sport. Dan welcomed us to the party, and made us feel like we were members of the group. Marie is so wonderful. She is always helpful and gave me tips about how to gear up for the gallery. We love you both. God rest Dan's soul. Wish we had more time with him.
Deb Brueggemann

Dan 2014 NOC by Amy Rogers    

2014 NOC Photo by Amy Rogers

Back to the top