Obituary of Therese Neil | TheUnion.com
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Obituary of Therese Neil

Therese Catherine Neil passed away on August 15, 2015, theFeast Day of Assumption of Mary. She was 82.

Recitation of the Rosary will be held on Saturday, August 22, 2015at St. Patrick Church in Grass Valley at 10:30AM. Funeral mass to follow at 11AM.

Therese was born Feb 22, 1933 in the small German town of Muenster, Texas, to Elise VictoriaSeyler and Henry Patrick Hennigan. Therese was the seventh of 9 children consisting of 5 sisters and 3 brothers. At the age of 16 she experienced her first life suffering, losing her dear brother Joe to a holdup

at a service station in Albuquerque. At the age of 18 she graduated from Saint Vincent Academy of Albuquerque, NM. She then moved to Southern California where she was an administrative secretary for an oil utilities company. Mom was set up on a date with Bill Neil and they fell in love at first sight. Therese and Bill were married November of 1954 and then started their family in Torrance, CA. In the early 70’s Mom yearned to be out of the beach fog and decided to move the entire family to the San Fernando Valley where she stayed busy taking care of her 8 children, driving them to school, baseball, music lessons, and all the busy tasks a mother does! While living in the valley, she raised horses for her children to ride on the long trails of Verdugo Hills. We had chickens, ducks, and dogs and cats too! Mom decided to take classes for her real estate license, which she put into effect several years later. In 1976, the family business, Independent Truck brokerage, had a contract putting up the cement dividers from Auburn to Reno. Mom drove us up to visit Dad and a friend of our old neighbor on Foothill. As we drove down Biladeau Ln mom saw a long pink ranch house on 10 acres, she fell in love with it, bought it 6 months later and we picked up and moved from So Cal to the tiny town of Penn Valley on Biladeau Ln. Mom’s

love of the land blossomed. Teri worked for Rolling Hills Realty as a real estate agent, she sold properties and made many lifetime friends between her clients and coworkers. I think mom bought more property than sold! In the late 70’s she bought Nevada County Answering Service. Finally a place for her now teenage children to be employed at! Teri employed many women who were in 12 step programs, you could say she had a heart for the “underdog.” It was the fall of 1985, November, where Mom would receive a call from the Santa Rosa Coroner to receive the devastating news that her daughter Patricia was killed by a drunk driver; a second major suffering in her life. Therese attended daily mass at St Patrick church and was faithful to our Lord Jesus Christ, giving her strength to get through her painful loss. Mom stayed a strong woman, after her daughter’s death, life still continued with the family. More grandchildren and great- grandchildren and family gatherings brought her so much delight. After selling the answering service to her daughter Tootsie and son-in-law Larry, she decided to help out with office work at her son Joe’s thriving computer parts business. Teri was known to come into the office with homemade meatloaf sandwiches or ham and cheese sandwiches for all the office girls. She always managed to say something quite funny and a bit off to make everybody in the office laugh! When she was at home, she would read avidly, with interests in politics, religion, health and science. She also enjoyed all the classics in literature, her bookshelf was quite full! In year 2009 her husband Bill passed away and then not 9 months later her first born son Willy died. Teri once again would have to pick up the pieces and stay strong. Mom left the family home in 2012 and moved into Hilltop where she had many dear friends. She will miss her beloved game of pinochle and afternoons of bingo. She would play the piano on a regular basis in the lobby – Mom was an accomplished pianist and organist. She played the pipe organ in several different cathedrals. She was unique, special, funny, beautiful, our mom Teri Neil – what a gem! Rest in peace, Mom.

Mom was an avid pianist and organist since her mid-teens. She played numerous weddings and funerals for the last 40 years. She was also the church organist for St. Canice church in Nevada City for about 25+ years. Teri loved throwing a fun party, rounding up local musicians from the area and having a musical jam at her Penn Valley home. Her love for piano and music continued through her elder years while living at Hilltop Manor she would play the grand piano for friends at Hilltop.

Teri was a member of CAMI (California Alliance for the Mentally Ill), Catholic YLI, California Small business association, and Republican Womans Organization. She personally believed the importance of charity and belonged to many charitable organizations.

An avid Pro-Life advocate, she believed “a person’s a person no matter how small” and the sanctity of life. Mom loved plants, she could walk along anywhere and pull a start from a plant and grow it in her own yard. She loved animals, especially her black cat “Spooks” whom throughout life named all her cats “Spooks”! Fresh baked bread and cinnamon rolls were a family favorite.

Mom’s biggest accomplishment was raising 8 children. She loved each and every one of her children! She was a business savvy woman and quite outspoken. Mom was NOT a shy woman and she would tell you exactly how it was. Strong-willed, caring, giving and most of all loving!

She is survived by her children: Lisa Weaver, Margie (Michael) Buonarati, Dan (MaryAnne) Neil, Joe (Karen) Neil, Therese ‘Tootsie’ (Larry) Reese, Jeanne (Rocky) Wong; grandchildren, Genieve Buckley, Jeanie Wright, William P. Neil, Jerod Gartin, Christina Bond, Jeanell Worrell, Justin Smith, Melissa Neil, Greg Nutter, Jake Weaver, Tim Weaver, Caitlin Neil, Olivia Buonarati, Pat Reese, Dan Reese, Patrick Neil, Therese Buonarati, Lawrence Reese, Michael Buonarati, Hailey Neil, Sam Reese, Christopher

Buonarati, Chloe Wong, Oden Wong; great grandchildren, Amelie Gartin, Savannah Johnson, Gabriel Bond, Landon Nutter, Xander Weaver, Cameron Weaver, Sebastian Neil, Ethan Worrell, Charlotte Bond, Ozia Neil, Madeline Worrell, Luke Buckley, Grace Buckely, Benjamin Wright; sisters, Rose (Andrew) Johnston and Rita (Ed) Baca; sister in law, Margaret Heath; not to mention numerous nieces and nephews from both sides of the Neil/Hennigan family.

Preceded in death by her husband, William Neil; son, Willy Neil; daughter, Patricia Neil; parents, Henry and Elise Hennigan; sisters, Alma Hennigan, Martha Montoya, MaryNell McColpin; brothers, Patrick, Frank and Joe Hennigan.

Memorial contributions can be sent to Down Syndrome Alliance http://www.downsyndromeinfo.org or California Alliance for the Mentally Ill http://www.namicalifornia.org

Arrangements are under the care of Hooper and Weaver Mortuary in Nevada City


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