As Shriners, we are part of an international organization that strengthens us individually, enhances our families and makes us part of a history of brotherhood and camaraderie. And, as Shriners, we also have the opportunity to be legacies. The Legacy Program helps strengthen our fraternal bonds with those closest to us, and allows members to honor the many men who laid the foundation of our great fraternity.
February is now designated as Legacy Month. Throughout the month, temples are encouraged to host Legacy Nights to promote membership and honor the members who have taken part in this program. Shriners International will also share stories of legacy families in our various publications and on our websites in recognition of their dedication to the Shriners fraternity.
For many men, like those in the McDaniel family, being a Shriner is a family tradition that stretches across generations.
Three generations of proud, active Shriners
Norwood A. “Woody” McDaniel of Syria Shriners in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, has a long, rich history with Shriners International. He played an integral role in promoting the Shriners fraternity for many years, and has served as a leader within the organization and benefactor to numerous Shriners Hospitals, making numerous and large financial contributions to our health care system both during his term as Potentate and in recent years long after holding office as a Shrine officer.
Woody is also part of a Shriner legacy family that has six family members who have been, or are presently, Shriners. Woody’s family has learned that being a Shriner means helping others less fortunate, having fun while doing so, developing fellowship and following Masonic principles and values.
Woody’s father, L.H. McDaniel, encouraged him to become a Mason. Woody later became a Shriner in 1955. Woody then inspired his own son, Norwood McDaniel Jr., to become involved in DeMolay International at age 14, to become a Mason at age 21, and a Shriner that same year.
Norwood Jr. is a 46-year member of Shriners International; member of Calam Shriners in Lewiston; 2016 Past President of Panhandle Shrine Club, serving as Outer Guard 2017; 2017 Vice President of Coeur d’Alene Shrine Club; and rides with the Legion of Honor Go Cart Club. Additionally, Norwood Jr. assists with numerous fundraising programs, the Coeur d’Alene Club and Panhandle Shrine Club sponsors.
Two of Norwood Jr.’s sons, Derek and Brady, have been life members of Shriners International since 2014, and are members of Medina Shriners in Chicago – creating three generations of living Shriners. Derek, Norwood Jr.’s oldest son, is a member of the Medina Big Wheels Club. In addition to being an active Shriner, Brady is a practicing chiropractor.
Dedicated Mason, Shriner and benefactor
Prior to becoming Potentate of Syria Shriners in 1978, Woody founded the Syria Horse Patrol, which became a popular unit in the many parades Syria Shriners entered. When he became Potentate, the temple had approximately 26,000 members. Woody held fundraisers that filled the 13,000-seat capacity of Pittsburgh’s Civic Arena, and all net proceeds raised were distributed to Shriners Hospitals for Children. When Woody began the Classic Car Unit as Potentate, the group was a hit during many of Syria Shriners’ public events.
Woody later served as Treasurer of Syria Shriners, and then went on to serve as Secretary Treasurer of the North America Shrine Treasurer’s Association for 11 years. In addition to being a Past Potentate of Syria Shriners, Woody is a member of Bethel Lodge # 761 F.&A.M., the Scottish Rite, Royal Arch Masons and Knights Templar. Woody now lives in Punta Gorda, Florida, with his wife, Louise.
Start Your family’s legacy today
We encourage everyone to pass along the Shriners tradition of fun, fellowship, and the Masonic principles of brotherly love, relief and truth in their family, and to strengthen their fraternal legacy. Shriners International will continue to grow from one generation to the next when you share the tradition and join the Shriners Legacy Program.
Pictured:Three generations of Shriners. (left to right) Norwood “Dan” McDaniel Jr., Woody McDaniel and Derek McDaniel.