Ancestral Notes

My Family History blog

My Grandfather, Orville Neil

My grandfather, Orvile Neil, was born on September 30, 1910 in Sandwich, Ontario and grew up in Paquette’s Corners, a village just south of Windsor, Ontario. He married Ruby Fairbairn in 1930 and they had eight children, four surviving to adulthood. He passed away on September 7, 1975 in Windsor, Ontario of a heart attack.

I didn’t know much about my grandfather, he and my grandmother divorced and she remarried before I was born. He was a slight man, about 5’6″ and balding. He always wore a suit, or at least that’s what he always wore when I saw him. He retired from Ford Motor Co. of Windsor and lived in a storefront duplex a couple of blocks from the factory. In the 1960’s, the area he lived in was a bad part of town and when my family would visit my aunt, who also lived in the back of the duplex for a time, we couldn’t go out of the house. My grandfather lived in the storefront part.

He wasn’t home much when we visited, except for in the mornings. He would have a shot of brandy before his morning coffee “to get his ticker going”. When my grandfather wasn’t home, he was at one of the bars on “the strip”. I guess he was a stereotypical Irishman, he liked his liquor. My parents would go to the bar to get him for a visit and we were instructed to lock all the doors and keep the windows up until they returned.

My grandfather always called my mom “Babe” and his favourtie flower was Baby’s Breath. My mother made sure there was a lot of the flower in his casket spray. My mom said that he was a gambler and his favourite numbers were 7 & 11. He died on Sept. 7th and his funeral was on the 11th. One thing that my grandfather and I will always share is our birthday.

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Filed under: Fairbairn, Family Files, Genealogy, O'Neil/Neil, , , ,

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