Vadis Elmo Daley was born on April 2, 1911, near Claremore, Oklahoma. Elmo Daley attended local country schools, eventually matriculating at the University of Oklahoma in 1931, where he received a B.A. and an M.A. in English. Prior to his marriage to Helen Comba in Miami, Oklahoma, on August 15, 1940, Daley worked as a mine carpenter and as a high school teacher. Just before their marriage, Helen and Elmo converted to Catholicism. In 1942 the poet enlisted in the U.S. Army and was honorably discharged on January 1, 1946.
Thereafter he taught high school in Rio Vista, California, for three semesters. He subsequently began his forty-six-year tenure as a teacher of writing and literature at Sierra College, Rocklin, California. He and his wife Helen have three children.
Elmo Daley has devoted his life to his family, his religious faith, his students, and his discipline. His lifelong avocation as a lepidopterist resulted in his impressive collection containing specimens from a variety of locales and countries.
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