Dan Ciha – Owner, Funeral Director
Dan started working at the funeral home when he was just 16 in 1976, after one of his high school classes toured what was then called the George L. Gay Funeral Home on Careers Day. Something sparked inside him that afternoon. The next day he called Mr. Gay and asked him if he would hire a high school kid to work part-time. He did. He hired Dan for the summer, which turned into a career that has spanned over 40 years.
Following graduation from West High School, Dan attended University of Iowa, Kirkwood Community College and Dallas Institute of Mortuary Science. Upon completion of his schooling, Dan returned to Iowa City, completed his internship and received his license working for the George L. Gay Funeral Home. Dan and his wife, Colette, purchased the funeral home from the Gay family in September of 2001 and it became Gay & Ciha Funeral and Cremation Service.
Together, Dan and Colette have seven children: Adam (Lisa), Megan, James, Andrew (Haley), Thomas (Devan), Joseph (Rose), and Elec. They are also the proud grandparents of Mia. Having been raised in Coralville, Coralville is still his home. They enjoy their time outdoors canoeing, kayaking, bicycling, they relax by working in the yard and gardens, cutting firewood, picking up farm rocks and sharing time with family, their dogs and multiple barn cats.
“I have been blessed with a career that I truly love, one that I have had some of the finest mentors in the profession to learn from. I deal with life. The person who has died, has lived. My service to the family is remembering and celebrating that life to the world.
Whether it is a small child that dies before their birth or a 103 year old grandmother that has witnessed much in her lifetime, all deserve to be recognized and cared for.”