Robert C. O’Neill, 88, of Bedford died peacefully on February 18, 2023. Born in Manchester on October 19, 1934, he was the son of Thomas and Delia (Conneely) O’Neill both of whom emigrated from Ireland.
Known to many around Manchester as “Blue Eyes”, “Bobby O”, “Shoes”, “Mr. O”, and “The Sen” he had countless friends and knew someone everywhere he went. Although he resided in Bedford for over 50 years, he took pride in his city, Manchester, where he grew up delivering the local paper with his brother, John, and playing baseball at Prout Park. Bob was extremely prominent in his city where he touched and impacted many lives and where he lived life to the fullest. Bob was known for enjoying a few cold brews while sharing his uncanny ability to tell a story or joke that always kept his audience captivated. He was a man who everyone gravitated toward for a good laugh or to help with any situation. His humor and quick wit was contagious and appreciated by all who met him. He loved people and treasured all who displayed and admired a good sense of humor.
Bob grew up in Manchester and attended Our Lady Of Perpetual Help Grammar School and graduated 1952 from Central High School. As he began his working life, he worked at W.H. McElwain Shoe Factory then attended night classes at St. Anselm College where he met his beautiful bride, Arlene Talty of Manchester. They married in 1962 and spent 60 wonderful years together.
In his early life, he joined the National Guard then spent several years working for Public Service Company of N.H. as a lineman. From there, he went into the car leasing business serving as President of P&S Car Leasing, which, in time, became Executive Auto Leasing, whereupon he served as Vice President until his retirement in 1995. Bob introduced the concept of car leasing to the Manchester area in the 1960s and he enjoyed a long and successful career of over 40 years in the leasing business.
Always active in supporting his community, he volunteered in fundraising for the United Way of Greater Manchester, Catholic Charities, American Cancer Society, and he was a founding member of the Kevin McHugh Memorial Golf Tournament. Bob was a member of the 100 Club of NH, The Manchester Country Club, the Century Club of St. Anselm College, served on the NH Transportation Authority and proudly supported St. Raphael’s Young Men’s Club.
Bob was a very active man who enjoyed many activities such as taking pride in maintaining his yard, particularly his emerald green lawn which was admired by many! He was athletic and he relished a competitive game of tennis, golf, or pickleball. Bob began skiing in his 30s and took pride in the multiple, cherished ski trips he took with his kids in the western part of the U.S. as well as in Europe. These adventurous ski trips were unequivocally some of the best times of his life! Also, Bob loved to visit Ireland and spend time with first cousins and extended family. Bob enjoyed his beach time and frequented local beaches as well as spending most of his winters relishing the warm Florida sunshine and all of the beach, boating, and sports activities that encompassed the warm climate. Most importantly, Bob was so proud of his family and he cherished celebrating the innumerable joyous occasions they shared together.
Bob’s predeceased family members include his brother, James O’Neill and wife Arline, as well as his brother, Thomas O’Neill.
Bob leaves behind his wife of 60 years, Arlene Talty, his children, Patrick O’Neill (Manchester), Maureen O’Neill McMillan (Florida), Erin O’Neill Caron (Manchester), her husband, Ronald Caron and his granddaughter, Brooke O’Neill. Other cherished family members include his brother John O'Neill and his wife Margaret, his sister Rita Shepperd and her husband Clinton, and Laura Marlene O’Neill (wife of deceased brother Thomas O’Neill). Bob embraced his time sharing stories and bantering with his many wonderful nephews and nieces with whom he had a close relationship.
Funeral services will be held privately at the family’s convenience. The O’Neill’s hope that family and friends will join them at a Celebration of Life to be scheduled at a later date. They look forward to sharing stories together and commemorating a life well lived.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in his memory to The Parkinson’s Foundation or St. Anselm College.
To send an online message of condolence, please go to www.lambertfunerahome.com.