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Olive Verna (Abbott) McNeil

August 17, 1934 ~ March 23, 2018 (age 83)

With heavy hearts, we announce the passing of “Ollie”, who peacefully left us on Friday, March 23rd.
Born in Sydney (August 17, 1934), Ollie was the beloved wife of Bertrum and much-loved mother of David (Ghislaine), Winnipeg; Ann, Sydney; Paddy, Vancouver; Michael (Alexis), Westmount; Jackie (Jamie), Victoria Harbour; Bert (Esther), Westmount; Danny, Coxheath; Melina, Halifax; and Billy (Danielle), Howie Centre. Ollie was the daughter of Melina Abbott and Thomas Clarke and raised by her maternal grandparents, Elizabeth and Thomas Abbott. She is survived by her sister, Jessie, and half-siblings, Jean, Thomasina, Paul and Cathy. Besides her parents, she is predeceased by her siblings, John, Hilda, Carrie, George, and Art. Ollie spent her early years in Whitney Pier. She was the loving grandmother of fifteen grandchildren and six great-grandchildren. She enjoyed playing cards with them and taught them how to lose gracefully – Ha Ha! She had many nieces, nephews, cousins and extended family, including her special sister-in-law, Betty.
In her young adulthood, Ollie worked in housekeeping at the Isle Royale Hotel, where she made lifelong friends and many fond memories. After raising her nine children she returned to work at The Cape Bretoner Hotel where she worked until retirement at the age of 65. Ollie was a true friend to many and everyone who knew her had many fun stories of their times together. Her dearest friends Eileen and Lisa Burchell and Donna Gale held a special place in her heart.
The family would like to thank the many caring nurses of the VON, EHS paramedics, the pharmacists and homecare workers who all played an important role in her last few years.
Special thanks to Dr. Hall and the staff of the An Cala Palliative Care Unit.
Visitation for Ollie will take place Thursday, March 29, 2018, from 12-2 p.m. at S.W. Chant and Son Funeral Home, 564 Alexandra Street, Sydney. A Celebration of her Life will follow at 2 p.m. in the funeral home chapel with Rev. Sheldon Chant to officiate. Reception to follow.
Online condolences may be made by visiting
In lieu of flowers, please make a donation to The Salvation Army or bring your special memories to the funeral home to share.


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