Joseph's Story

WATERVILLE - Joseph Gerard McNeil, 83, passed peacefully at this home with his family at his side, May 10, 2014. He had suffered a significant stroke in January. He was born in Brewer, Dec. 26, 1930, the 2nd of 5 children.

Jerry attended St. Mary's School in Bangor until his family moved to Washburn in 1945. At Washburn High School, he was known as a standout basketball player, making the All-Tourney Team in 1949. After graduating high school, Jerry served 4 years in the Air Force. Upon return to Aroostook County, he met Claudette Bouchard whom he married on June 24, 1961. Together they raised their family in Caribou. Jerry worked for New England Telephone (later AT&T). During his 31-year career he was regarded "as one of the most technically competent, respected and dedicated supervisors in Maine". He took an early retirement package at age 55 and started his own business doing telephone contract work in the Caribou area. In 1987 Jerry closed his business and began working for CTC in Winthrop as a Technical Services Controller where he worked for an additional 6 years. As a result of this job, Jerry moved his family to Waterville. In their retirement Jerry and Claudette made many friends during their winters in Myrtle Beach. His love of golf was only surpassed by his love of family. Jerry found great pleasure babysitting grandchildren, playing cribbage, as well golfing with friends, children and grandchildren. He was appreciated as a knowledgeable advisor on home improvement projects, donating thousands of hours to family and friends. Jerry was known for his even temperament, wise counsel and sense of humor. His sage advice and handy tips will live on through his children, grandchildren and over 50 nieces and nephews.

He is survived by his beloved wife of 52 years, Claudette; his children and their spouses, Tom and Cindy McNeil of Waterville, Sue and Bruce Pelletier of South Portland, Shelly and Jonathan Moody of Oakland; grandchildren, Ryan, Matt, Meghan, Sarah, Jacob and Grace; brother, William MacNeil of Beverly, MA and sister, Mary Clevette of Caribou. He was predeceased by his parents, Joseph MacNeil and Marion Beaulieu as well as brothers, Tom MacNeil and John McNeil. Jerry and family would like to thank the caring and compassionate professionals in the Acute Rehabilitation and Critical Care Unit of Maine General Medical Center. Their encouragement and commitment to his care meant a great deal to Jerry and his family during his illness.

In lieu of flowers, donation may be sent to the American Heart Association, 51 US Route 1, Suite M, Scarborough, ME 04074. Visitation will be held 4-7 p.m. Friday, May, 16. A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated 11 a.m. Saturday, May 17 at Notre Dame Catholic Church. Services are under the care and direction of the Veilleux Funeral Home, 8 Elm St., Waterville, ME 04901
Published in Bangor Daily News
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