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George Hamilton ‘Hammie’ MacNeil

George Hamilton ‘Hammie’  MacNeil

Passed on: January 14th, 2018

We regret to announce the peaceful passing of George Hamilton MacNeil, 85, at the Northside General Hospital on Sunday, January 14, 2018 after a brief illness.
Born on July 10, 1932 to the late Joseph and Rita (King) MacNeil, he lived his entire very full life in and around Sydney Mines.
He is survived by Shirley, his wife of 56 years with whom he had an incredibly close and loving relationship and life partnership. He had a very large and close family which was very important to him. He was an exceptional role model for his sons, Tim (Karen), grandchildren Kelley, Christina and Tony, great grandchild Sophie (Virginia), Blaise (Trish), grandchildren Liam and Erin, Oakville, Ontario and Darrell (Kim), grandchildren Kara, Kent and Colton. He is survived by his sisters, Isabel MacNeil, Agatha Cowie and Helen Hanratty, and in-laws, Ann Marie MacNeil, Shal Mei MacNeil, Bud and Joan McKinnon, Ralph and Helen McKinnon, Phyllis and Art Jackman and Jim Corbett, and a large number of nieces and nephews.
In addition to his parents, who died when he was very young, he was predeceased by his brothers, Frank and Connie; his sister, Ruth Burke; his step brothers and sisters, Joe, Tom, Cameron, Eddie, Ella and Mary; his in-laws, Bern MacNeil, Harry Cowie, Burt Hanratty, Dorothy and Gerald Jardine, Joan and Ernie Brown and Ann Corbett; his father and mother-in-law, James and Anita McKinnon, and by members of the Iannetti family from Atlantic Street who were very close to him and had a tremendous positive impact on his life when he was orphaned after the death of both of his parents.
After a very challenging early start, like many people of his generation, Hammie, or Hambones as he was known to many of his friends, worked incredibly hard to build a life for himself. After many years of working with Iannetti’s and Martell’s construction (there was not a truck or piece of heavy construction equipment that he couldn’t operate), he struck out on his own and built his own very successful local businesses, North Metals & Hashems, of which he was very proud. He invested a tremendous amount of time and energy, working full time until his recent illness, to make these businesses a success, not just for his own reward but also for the people who worked with him – he was very proud of them and the work they all did together.
In addition to his family and his business, he was also loved to travel. The boy from Atlantic Street found his way around the world, visiting China and Europe and many parts of Canada and the US with his friends and family. He particularly liked his trips to the beach in North Carolina with the extended family in the big beach house where everyone gathered around the table for dinner and laughs and his trips to Las Vegas with his “cronies” where he didn’t leave much money at the tables but rather spent his time looking at yet another excavator or bull dozer – nothing he liked more.
He was also a very big believer in giving back, likely a reflection of the circumstances he himself faced when he was young. He was a very generous supporter of his church, his community, and those who needed a hand.
Thank you to Dr. Bill MacDonald for many years of care and the Nursing staff on the 5th floor of the Northside General Hospital who provided him with such great care over the last couple of months.
Visitation for Hammie MacNeil will be held on Tuesday, January 16, 2018, from 2-4 p.m. and 7-9 p.m. in J.M. Jobes Funeral Home, 635 Main St., Sydney Mines. Mass of Christian burial will be held Wednesday at 10 a.m. at Holy Family Church with Fr. James Oliver officiating. With a reception to follow at the Parish Hall. Private interment at Holy Cross Cemetery at a later date.
Family flowers only please. If you wish to make a donation, he would appreciate your support of the Sydney Mines Food Bank.
Words of comfort may be forwarded to the family at www.jmjobesfuneralhome.com.


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