Born on January 15, 1955, Daniel Robert Nestler, 67, passed away in his sleep on December 16, at his residence in Havertown.
From an early age Dan displayed remarkable musical talent. He studied piano with Katherine Burruss and trained with the internationally acclaimed trumpet player Rick Giangiulio. He graduated from Haverford High School in 1972, where he was a stand-out in the orchestra, marching band and jazz band. Dan studied for a time at the Philadelphia Music Academy and was a popular performer. He appeared at Main Point, The Media Inn, The Rusty Nail, and other venues, where he was known for his trumpet's mellow tone and his improvisational skills. A beloved local music teacher, he was appreciated for his kind and encouraging manner by his many private piano, trumpet, and guitar students.
Dan was a trained air conditioning mechanic and an avid sports fan who loved the Eagles and Sixers. He had a great time doing jumbles and crossword puzzles, but he enjoyed most of all practicing trumpet and piano and listening to favorite musicians such as Duke Ellington. One brother recalls growing up with Dan teaching him to play blues on the piano and instilling in him a love of Elton John, Carole King, Simon and Garfunkel, and Bruce Springsteen before anyone even knew about him. And a lifelong friend was impressed by Dan being extremely creative and writing music and playing it so well. Most notable to her, though, was that he had “a very sweet, earnest heart.”
It was this thoughtfulness that helped Dan to be a remarkable caretaker for his father for over four years. They shared a passion for chess, music, and the Phillies. And living in the third-floor apartment of their family home, Dan enabled his father to stay at home the rest of his life. He was the middle child of seven siblings born to the late Donald Eugene Nestler and the late Helen (Burgen) Nestler, and Dan loved his large family. He was survived by five brothers and sisters (Grace Bergen, Susan Nestler, Kathy Halberstadt, Doug Nestler, and Dale Nestler, as well as thirteen nieces and nephews, their spouses, and their children. However, he had been preceded in death six months earlier by his oldest brother, David, who had been virtually his best friend.
Although there will be no service, the family welcomes posted comments on the Tribute Wall of The Donohue Funeral Home. Memorial contributions in lieu of flowers may also be sent to your favorite charity.