|Birth: ||Mar. 24, 1936|
|Death: ||Jan. 26, 2009|
William John "Bill" O'Connell, 72, of Great Falls, a military veteran and retired D.A. Davidson employee who was active in his church, died of natural causes Monday at Peace Hospice.
Visitation is 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Friday at Schnider Funeral Home. A vigil service is 7 p.m. Friday, with funeral liturgy 10:30 a.m. Saturday, both at Holy Spirit Catholic Church.
He is survived by his wife, Jo Ann O'Connell of Great Falls, and their three children. He was very proud of them and the wonderful adults that they have become: Carol Lynn (Timothy) Paul of Great Falls, Debra Jo (Joe) Jacyna of Penticton, B.C., and Sean Patrick (Teresa) O'Connell of Great Falls. He was especially proud of their 10 grandchildren: Tyler Joseph, Jeffrey William, Spenser Timothy and Matthew Alexander Paul; Daniel Joseph, Paul Michael, John "Jack" William and Josef Ron Jacyna; and Caitlin Marie and Ryan Patrick O'Connell. Bill is also survived by two brothers, Neil (Christine) O'Connell of Jackson, N.J., and Jeremiah (Ellen) O'Connell of Ridgewood, N.J.; sisters Kathleen (Edward) Neisner of Yonkers, N.Y., and Patricia Dillon of Sioux Falls, S.D.; a sister-in-law, Sue Ellen Olds; and a brother-in-law, Joseph (Doris) Boyle.
Bill was born March 24, 1936, in New York City, to his parents Cornelius and Kathleen (McGloin) O'Connell. He was raised in New York City and received his education at St. Monica Elementary School and Cardinal Hays High School.
He joined the Air Force and was stationed at Malmstrom Air Force Base. After his tour concluded, he joined the Montana Air National Guard. He later joined the Navy Reserve and rose to the rank of Chief Petty Officer. He finally rejoined the Air National Guard, becoming the first traditional Guardsman to achieve the rank of Chief Master Sergeant.
Bill started his business career as the credit manager of Montgomery Ward. He transferred to the company store in Walla Walla, Wash., but returned to Great Falls to work in the credit department at Andy's Tire. In 1969, he joined D.A. Davidson and Co., where he became their corporate cashier. He retired after 20 years with the company.
Bill and Jo Ann Boyle were married at Our Lady of Lourdes Church on May 26, 1962, and became very active in the Catholic community in Great Falls.
Bill served as bookkeeper for the Eastside Catholic Community. He also served on the parish council and on the parish finance council at Sts. Peter and Paul Parish. He continued his involvement in the parish when the community moved into its new church building, Holy Spirit Church. He served in various capacities as sacristan, Eucharistic minister and lector for the liturgies.
Bill also was a Cursillista with the Cum Christo (Cursillo) movement. He was also a Stephen Leader and minister for the parish, and a member of the Knights of Columbus.
He was preceded in death by his parents, a sister, Joan O'Connell; and his infant son, William J. O'Connell Jr.
Published in Great Falls Tribune on January 29, 2009
Holy Spirit Catholic Church Columbarium
Created by: Judyvv
Record added: Jul 30, 2013
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