Older men are to be temperate, dignified, sensible, sound in faith, in love, in perseverance. Titus 2:2
Wyvone O’Neal, affectionally known as “Neal,” was born in Pickens, AR, on December 24, 1930, to James Henry and Josephine (McGruder) O’Neal. He was the sixth of seven children born to this union. He was educated at public schools in Dumas, AR, and St. Louis, MO. Wyvone was inducted into the Army on March 20, 1951. He served in the Korean War, and through a solid science background and strong intellect, he was promoted in rank from Private 1st Class to Sergeant where his team recorded aerial map footage. He subsequently received an honorable discharge from Fort Sheridan in Illinois.
Wyvone possessed a strong work ethic. A er military service, he worked for the Chicago Transit Authority as an “L” train driver. He was a true entrepreneur. After obtaining his Barber’s license, he left Chicago and moved to St. Louis where he met and married Thelma Woods and formed a blended family. To this union, three additional children were born.
He was offered a position with St. Louis Car Company where he and his team built the elevator pod/passenger capsules that carried visitors to the top of the St. Louis Gateway Arch.
When the Car Company ceased operations in 1974, his entrepreneurial spirit rose again, and he attended the Vatterott & Sullivan Technical College, obtaining certi cation in Heating, Air Conditioning, and Refrigeration. His certification would be the catalyst upon which he founded O’Neal’s Heating and Cooling Company, serving the St. Louis and surrounding communities for more than 30 years.
Wyvone quietly departed this life ursday, April 14, 2022, at the Rouderbush Veterans Hospital in Indianapolis, IN. He was preceded in death by: his parents, James Henry O’Neal and Josephine O’Neal Watson; brother, James O’Neal; sisters, Viola O’Neal, Robezine Renfroe, Menzola Frazier, Willie Pearl Cox, and Burtie Lee Carter Scott; children, Kevin and Greta; and grandson, Christain Guynn. His in uence will forever remain in the lives of all who knew him.
Wyvone’s wonderful long life will be cherished in the lives of his family: Thelma Glasper of Missouri, Martha Adrow O’Neal of Arkansas, Mary Woods of Missouri, Lynette O’Neal of Illinois, Raymond (Deborah) Crawford of South Dakota, Kirk Gant of Missouri, Edith O’Neal of Missouri, Dr. Yvonne (Tunde) O’Neal Allu of Indiana, and a host of devoted grandchildren, great-grandchildren, nieces, nephews, great- nieces and nephews, cousins, other extended family, and friends.
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