Saturday, January 06, 2001

Obituary: Robert W. O'Neil

MADISON [Wisconsin] - Robert W. O'Neil, age 75, died on Thursday, January 4, 2001. He was born on February 8, 1925, in Des Moines, Iowa, the son of Henry and Kate O'Neil. He graduated from Madison Central High School. Bob enlisted in the U.S. Marine Corps in 1942, and served in World War II on the Okinawa and Marshall Islands. Robert joined the Madison Police Department in 1948. From there he became a sergeant with the Dane County Sheriff's Department, then served as an agent for the Alcohol Tax And Fire Arms Task Force. Robert continued his career as a special investigator for the Dane County Sheriff's Department, retiring on January 20, 1983, after 30 years of service. After retiring, Bob moved to his vacation home in Weyauwega, Wisconsin. Robert was a member of the Madison Elks Club and a lifetime member of VFW Post No. 7591, where he received a Commander's Award for his untiring, loyal and dedicated service to his post as a senior vice commander from 1986 until 1988. He is also an honored special lifetime member of the Wisconsin Professional Police Association, and a lifetime member of the American Legion post in Weyauwega. Robert was the first elected president of the Wisconsin Law Enforcement Officers Association, where he co-founded the WLEOA Campground in Waupaca County. He also co-founded the White Lake Preservation Association in Weyauwega. He is survived by his wife, Anna; children, James (Lois) O'Neil, Mary Kay (David) Riggs, Christine (Stephen) Roisum, and Robert (Charlaine) O'Neil; daughter-in-law, Margaret O'Neil; 17 grandchildren, Jim, Jeff, Sean, Kris, Tanya, Steve, Bill, Julie, Bob, Kim, Bryan, Karyn, Dillon, Trevor, Chad, Brooke and Brent; and 12 great-grandchildren, Lexy, Taryn, Nicholas, Riley, Leah, Billy, Kassidy, Gavin, Garrett, Justin, Jake and Kyler. He was preceded in death by his parents; son, John William O'Neil; and brothers, Hank, Jack and Bill O'Neil. A Mass of Christian Burial will be held on Monday, January 8, 2001, at 11:00 a.m. at ST. DENNIS CATHOLIC CHURCH, 505 Dempsey Road. Burial will follow at Highland Memory Gardens, with military rites conducted by the Madison Area Firing Squad. A visitation will be held on Sunday, January 7, 2001, from 4:00 p.m. until 7:00 p.m. at GUNDERSON EAST FUNERAL HOME, 5203 Monona Drive. Dad, Grandpa, you will be greatly missed. We love you! Gunderson East Funeral Home 5203 Monona Drive (608) 221-5420

Originally published in the Wisconsin State Journal on January 6, 2001; submitted by Michael Vahldieck (Class of 1968)

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