Earnest Lee O’Neil was born January 10, 1943 in Marlboro County to the late Mary Lou Stackhouse O’Neil and the late William O’Neil Sr. He was converted at an early age and joined Spears United Methodist Church. He received his educational training in the Clio Community of Marlboro County and graduated from Lincoln High School in 1960. He later joined the United States Army and served with honor during the Vietnam War. Upon returning from his military tenure, Earnest worked as a truck driver with Kenan Transport and Company for 43 years. As a dedicated employee, he received an outstanding achievement award for driving over a million miles accident-free. After retirement, he devoted most of his time as a family caretaker. Before and after the merger of Spears United Methodist Church to Trinity, he was a solid pillar in the church and served faithfully as the Sunday School Superintendent, Certified Lay Speaker, member of the Trustee Board, PPRC, Finance Committee as well as many other capacities.
As for me and my house, we will serve the Lord. Joshua 24:15
Earnest was married to his loving and devoted wife Rosa for 47 years. To this union they were blessed with three children who he raised in the nurture and admonition of the Lord. He shared his gift of wisdom, displayed a true commitment to God’s word and fought the good fight of faith. Earnest was a man after God’s own heart whose work will surely speak for him.
He leaves behind to cherish his memory, his wife Rosa, his children, Emily O’Neil of the home, Dr. Sheila (Justin) O’Neil-Brown of Bennettsville, SC and Deon (Latasha) O’Neil, Esq. of Columbia, SC; two grandchildren, Darian Ja’Von O’Neil and Olivia Grace O’Neil; three siblings, Willie Mae O’Neil of Richmond VA, William (Pearlie) O’Neil of Clio, SC and Alice (LeVance) Parnell of High Point, NC; two aunts, Eula Hamer of Washington DC and Flora McLaughlin of Dillon SC; and a host of special nieces, nephews, cousins, relatives and friends.
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