Daniel Wright Finlinson died November 2, 2021 from Covid. He was not vaccinated.

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Daniel Wright Finlinson was born July 29, 1954 to Oran Jacobsen Finlinson and Rosella Wright Finlinson in Oak City, Utah. Daniel was the youngest of four brothers. Oran Vaughn and Hal W. preceded him in death. Maurice J. still lives in Orem, Utah. At age 10 his mother passed away. His father died when Daniel was 37.

Daniel married Deanna L (Jensen) Finlinson, later divorced.

Daniel was raised on a dairy farm. As most people realize farming can be dangerous work. Daniel was riding with his brother Hal on a tractor and there was an accident and Hal was killed. Another time Daniel had a serious injury to his head when he was kicked by a calf early on in his life. That left some cognitive injuries to Daniel that limited him in his reading abilities but Daniel was able to graduate later from Payson High School and go on to serve a full LDS American Indian Mission in New Mexico and Arizona. Daniel had a talent for welding and worked for a company welding when he saw an opening at the Utah State Prison working on their dairy along with the inmates and other staff. He worked other aspects of the Prison farm like the hog farm before moving on to working at the prison industries warehouse for the rest of his career. Daniel was able to pass the CDL test the first time he took it and did a lot of truck driving as part of his job.

What a career Daniel Finlinson, aka "Disco Dan" had. He worked at the Utah State Prison in Draper, Utah just one month short of 40 years. Virtually everyone at the prison knew "Disco Dan" --be it inmates or staff.

Dan got the moniker "Disco Dan" when he first started working at the prison because he liked to go disco dancing in Utah county back when the disco dancing craze was peaking. Disco Dan had the disco moves and was willing to show them off. Dan also had a great singing voice and could belt out Elvis songs with a perfect impersonation.

Dan worked for Utah Correctional Industries in their warehouse. That sent him to all parts of the prison, both in Draper and Gunnison. From the kitchen to the blocks.

Daniel could talk to anyone and he got along well with the staff and inmates during his career. Daniel W Finlinson will be interred in the Oak City, Utah cemetery in the spring of 2022.

Life Story Info

Post Date

Jan 11, 2022

Personal Info


Oak City, Utah, United States


Orem, Utah, United States

Cause of Death






Religion and Beliefs

Latter-day Saint

Worked For

  • Utah State Prison


  • High School
    Payson High
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I didn't know Disco was gone. What a career he had at the prison and to work there for 40 years. Dan was quite the character. He had a lot of stories to tell, that's for sure. He had great plans for the future and wanted to retire and live in a cabin in southern Utah. To tell you the truth I think he would have missed the prison even though he complained about working there, although he didn't want to drive out to the new one out by the Great Salt Lake. He will get some decent rest now. RIP.

Terry P. Feb 22, 2023

Sorry to hear about Disco's passing. Thanks Curtis for letting me know.

Merlyn , Orem, UT, US Jul 11, 2022

Dan was an awesome man, I'm glad I got to know him!

I worked with him at the prison.

Linda Spotts Feb 28, 2022

Dan was a dependable worker with a big heart. I worked with Dan for many years and he always had ideas that never ceased to amaze me! He will be missed.

Craig Madson , West Valley City , UT, US Jan 16, 2022

A good worker and friend, you'll be missed.

Mike Markham Jan 12, 2022

Dan was a great friend. He was one of a kind. Dan always kept us on our toes. Every day he would have a different story to tell. He was hit by lightning three times. Dan was always good for a laugh You will be missed.

Kelly Willey , Bountiful, UT, US Jan 12, 2022

Dan was a good friend. I worked with him for a very long time. He had a great heart.. he could frustrate me and make me laugh at the same time. I never knew of his past. It is good to know more about him. He is missed.

Carolyn Price Jan 12, 2022

Dan you will be missed

Mike Colebrook , Salt Lake City , UT, US Jan 11, 2022

I had the pleasure of working with Dan for several years. He was a very conscientious worker and a good friend. He will be missed.

Kerry Ross Boren , Salt Lake City, UT, US Jan 11, 2022

I knew Dan for 40 years. One of the most dependable employees you could hire. He started at the prison in 1981. The same year I did. I really don't remember him taking any days off. He was never late. And he worked hard and did his job well. Thanks for all your hard work Dan. You will be missed.

Curtis McCarthy Jan 11, 2022