John J. Neville

October 21st, 2015

John J. Neville, age 91, of Wilmington, died peacefully on October 21, 2015, at the Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston. John was the beloved husband of Eileen (Quirke) Neville and the late Eleanor (Karish) Neville, devoted father of J. Christopher Neville & his wife Carol of Wilmington, Mark Neville & his wife Deb of Mashpee, Lauren Desforge & her husband Peter of Westford, Brian Neville & his wife Donna of Haverhill, Keith Neville & his wife Tina of Pittsfield, Gary Neville & his wife Lynn of Wilmington, and Jeanne Mieszczanski & her husband Chris of Chelmsford. Loving “Grandpa” of Shaun & Mary Beth Neville, Scott & Alex Neville, Katie Neville, Kevin & Jenn Neville, Eric & Kate Neville, Ryan & Carla Neville, Juliane Desforge, Mathew Desforge, Nicole Neville, Alex Neville, Elena Mieszczanski, John Mieszczanski, and James Mieszczanski, and great-grandchildren Liam, Owen, Benjamin, Bradley, Michael, Andrew, and Nora. Cherished son of the late Francis A. and Mary (Garde) Neville and the last of 12 siblings. John was the brother-in-law of Edward Karish, Robert & Clare Karish, and Mary Remmert and is further survived by many nieces and nephews.

John was a simple person who always found a way to stay busy in the yard, the garage or the “furnace room”. Even as his health declined, he continued to do much more around the house than a typical 90-year old. His work ethic was a product of his upbringing in Saugus where everyone was expected to carry their share of the responsibilities around the house.

After High School, he enlisted in the US ARMY where he was stationed in Germany at the end of World War II. Following the war he went to work at the General Electric Plant in Lynn as a tool and die maker. Soon thereafter, he went to a dance where he met his first wife Eleanor and they married and lived in Winthrop where they began to raise their first two sons. The small family moved to Wilmington in 1954 where they settled for many years, raising seven children in a small ranch house prior to Eleanor’s passing in 1975.

In 1952, John and Eleanor bought a small piece of Lakefront property on Bow Lake in Strafford NH. Using recycled wooden packing crates from the GE, used doors and windows and rolls of tarpaper, they began constructing what was to become the summer vacation spot that is now providing relaxation and enjoyment for its fourth generation of Neville’s. It was his second proudest accomplishment

In 1977, John went to another dance and met Eileen, a single Lexington school teacher who had a similar love of dancing. They were married barely a year later and Eileen became a nurturing stepmother and role model for the six children still living at home.

Upon his retirement in 1986, John and Eileen began vacationing across the country exploring places that he had never had an opportunity to experience. By the 1990’s they began spending parts of the winter in Longboat Key, FL, and then soon purchased a home at Bay Indies in Venice, FL where they spent many enjoyable winters together. He loved to jokingly “brag” about his three properties in Wilmington, Florida, and Bow Lake.

Regardless of where they were, John and Eileen always took advantage of the opportunity to dance, either with the Wilmington Dance Club, at the Venice VFW, or any dance floor within 30 miles of where they were staying. He loved weddings and the opportunity to enjoy his formal waltzes, fox trots and swing dances, taking up the entire dance floor with extravagant precision.

John’s humble demeanor, left leaning political philosophy, and notoriously frugal spending habits could never overshadow the pride he felt in his family of seven children, 13 grandchildren and seven great-grandchildren, for all of whom he had a special memory or connection. He never played favorites and engaged each child, grandchild or great-grandchild as their own individual. They were undoubtedly his proudest accomplishment. His genuine love and warmth for his family will be truly missed.

Family & friends will gather at the Nichols Funeral Home, 187 Middlesex Ave. (Rte. 62), Wilmington, on Saturday, October 24th at 11:00 a.m. followed by a Mass of Christian burial in St. Thomas of Villanova Church, 126 Middlesex Ave., Wilmington at 12:00 noon. Interment to follow in Wildwood Cemetery, Wilmington. Visiting hours will be held at the Funeral Home on Friday, October 23rd from 4:00-8:00 p.m. In lieu of flowers donations in John’s memory may be made to the Cath Lab Research Fund at Mass General Hospital, c/o Development Office, 125 Nashua St. Suite 540, Boston, MA 02114 or to the Bow Lake Camp Owners Association, P. O. Box 227, Strafford, NH 03884.


17 Entries in Guest Book for “John J. Neville”

  1. Mike & Doreen Champoux says:

    Chris, Carol, and th entire Neville family, you are in our thoughts and prayers. Sincere codolences. Take comfort that your Dad rests now with our Lord.
    Mike and Doreen

  2. Karen O'Reilly says:

    Lynn, Jeanne and Family, Your family is our thoughts at this time. We’re very sorry for your loss.
    Karen and Gerry O’Reilly

  3. Alexandra Neville says:

    Neville Family,

    I am so very sorry for your loss. He was a wonderful man, a terrific husband, father, grandfather and great-grandfather. He made me feel very much a part of the family and having lost my own grandfather at a very young age, made me appreciate that.
    He will be missed.
    Alexandra Neville

  4. Cliff & Loretta King says:

    Chris and Carol our sincere sympathies on the loss of your dad. Know you and your family are in our prayers. May he rest in peace.
    Cliff & Loretta

  5. Mary Kiesinger and Family says:

    Dear Chris and Neville Family,

    Our thoughts and prayers are with you in your loss. Take comfort in knowing that your father has finally reached his ultimate goal. We hope and pray that when he drew his last breath that the Holy Spirit took him up into heaven and that God welcomed him with loving and outstretched arms into his heavenly kingdom. A place so beautiful, loving, full of peace, and free of all suffering and pain. May God continue to love and bless all of you today and always!

    With sincere sympathy,

    Mary Kiesinger and Family

  6. Jim and Deb Corkins says:

    Dear Keith and Family,
    Our sincere condolences in the loss of your beloved father. Our thoughts and prayers are with you.

  7. Susan & Dennis Hewitt says:

    To Chris and the entire Neville Family,
    We are saddened to learn of your loss. We hope your memories of happy times shared will sustain you and help you heal.
    Susan and Dennis Hewitt

  8. Francis J. Neville says:

    To my Aunt and all my cousins,

    We are so sorry to hear of Uncle John’s passing, may he rest in peace. Our thoughts and prayers are with the entire family.

    Frank and Grace Neville

  9. Pauline Dukeshire says:

    John was a special friend to me and my late husband Robert for over 80 years. We had many wonderful memories to share and were truly blessed to have each other for so many years. My heartfelt thoughts to Eileen and the wonderful family that he was so proud of. Pauline

  10. Sue & Pat McMahon says:

    Chris & Carol and family, We were so sorry to hear of your Dad’s passing Chris. We only got to see him a few times but I always remember his great smile. Your dad reminded me of my dad – great men, great dads and grandfathers. Please know you are all in our thoughts and prayers.

    Sue & Pat McMahon

  11. Larry and Jude harrington says:

    Our sincere condolences to Chris carol and the entire Neville family on the loss of John. He will be remembered always.

  12. Jerry Lawrenson says:

    Neville Family,

    We are very sorry to hear of the loss of your Dad. Our thoughts are with your family at this time.

    Jerry and Beth Lawrenson

  13. manny(junior) griffin says:


  14. Frank West says:

    To the Neville Family -

    Karen and I are saddened by your loss. Our prayers are with you at this time.

    With Deepest Sympathy – Karen and Frank West

  15. Mary Levey says:

    To the Neville Family,
    So sorry for your loss. You had many years and memories that will help you keep him close. He is at peace now. My thoughts and prayers are with you all.

  16. Bob and Phyllis Finlay says:

    Eileen – Sorry to hear about John’s passing. He was his own character just as his brother Jim was. I know my life is richer for all the Neville’s and their spouses and kids that I have met. We enjoyed the time when we saw you in Venice with Bob and Helen. Our thoughts and prayers are with you and your family.

  17. Bill & Catherine Jensen says:

    We are so sorry for your loss. Our thoughts and prayers are with you all.

RSS feed for comments on this post.