James J. “Bucky” O’Neil, 90, Lebanon, formerly of Dallas, passed away peacefully, Friday, June 24, 2022 at Wellspan Good Samaritan Hospital, Lebanon. Born in Wilkes-Barre, he was the son of the late John F. and Sophia (Narsauage) O’Neil. Bucky graduated from Kingston High School Class of 1949 and attended King’s College.
If you knew Bucky, you knew he proudly served his country as a Staff Sergeant in the United States Marine Corp, raised to the rank of Post Master with the United States Postal Service, he was an avid golfer, meticulous gardener and greenskeeper, and a strident drum player. He grew up being mentored and influenced by the greatest generation, and he lived his best life committed to the American dream working hard, loyally serving in community organizations and playing a lot of links!
He was a faithful parishioner of St. Therese’s Church, Shavertown, member of The Back Mountain Men’s Ecumenical Group, George M. Dallas Lodge F & AM #531, Irem Temple Shrine, Shrine Drum & Brass Band, String Band and the Irem Golf Association. Bucky was a life member of the Marine Corp Legion of Irem, Daddow Isaacs American Legion, Dallas, and social member of Fox Hill Golf Association.
Preceeding him in death, in addition to his parents, were his wife of 55 years, Helen Lousie Oneil; one brother, John T. Oneil and German Short Hair Pointer, Major. Surviving are brother-in-law James Paley, sister-in-law Yvonne Reynolds (Don). Nephew Jason Paley (Tina). Nephew David Reynolds (Patricia). Nieces Kathy Bellas (Jack), and Sarah Stefanides (Ed). Great nephews and nieces Ian (Tracey), Kayleigh, Dylan, and Donald Reynolds. Caitlin (Sue) and Guthrie (Skyler) Conyngham, Zachariah Bellas. Abigail and Benjamin Stefanides. Bucky also leaves behind faithful K-9, Cody.
Here is what we want you to know and remember about Bucky; he was a beau – old fashioned, well dressed man. He had a standing appointment with the barber, and his grass length never ever exceeded 3 inches. He purchased his first car, a Chrysler, when he got out of the Marines, and he finished out with a Ford F150 Crew Cab. He tipped well, and he always had a box of chocolates or pastries to show his appreciation for helpful service. In the Marines he cooked for soldiers at Camp Lejune and on the troop trains heading west. When he married, he was the king of the kitchen and cooked for his bride for 55 years, although SOS never made the cut on the household menu. He was a loving dog master, but not a very good dog trainer. We have pictures of chewed up chairs and couches to prove it. When he wasn’t working, doing his civic duties, taking care of his yard, or his wife, he was golfing. He played courses all over the east coast, pretty sure he had 2 hole in ones, he hit some balls with Arnold Palmer at Irem, and he went to the Masters 2 times. He was the type of player that had just as much affection for the landscape of the course as he did the challenge of each hole. Before golf, he was a baseball player, a very good baseball player. Prior to the start of the Korean War, the Marines selected him to play on the Marine Troop team. Bucky also played his snare drum to the end, providing rhythm and beats at the Juniper Christmas concert. He loved parading with the Irem bands and supporting the Shrine Circus and gave us all a lot of good memories by going out to support him.
Bucky always spoke fondly of growing up on the streets of the 3rd Ward in Kingston, and being with family. He loved his wife, his faith, his home, and his country. His last act of patriotism, persistent as he was, he somehow finagled Juniper Village to arrange for a local Boy Scout troop to come and and properly retire an old tattered American flag and raise a new Glory. May we all take a minute today to think about this act of humility and loyalty in his honor. Semper Fi
Funeral service will be held, Saturday, July 2, 2022 at 11:00 AM from The Richard H. Disque Funeral Home, Inc. 2940 Memorial Highway, Dallas with The Rev. James Paisley, pastor St. Therese’s Church, Shavertown, officiating. Interment will be in Oak Lawn Cemetery, Wilkes-Barre. Friends may call Saturday from 9:00 AM until time of service. Donations if desired may be made to St. Therese’s Church 64 Davis Street, Shavertown, Pa. 18708 or to Blue Chip Farm Animal Refuge 974 Lockville Road, Dallas, Pa. 18612. Online condolences may be made at Disquefuneralhome.com.