Francis A. (Frank) O'Connell

Obituary
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O'CONNELL--Francis (Frank) A., died in Grass Valley, CA on June 29, 2008, at age 94. Born on the Upper East Side of Manhattan and raised in the Bronx, he remained a New Yorker at heart despite spending his final thirty-five years in northern California. He graduated from St. Nicholas of Tolentine in the Bronx and Fordham Law before WWII and practiced labor law at Cravath, Swain and Moore. He enlisted during WWII and served in Australia as a cryptographer. After the war he returned to Cravath, and then worked as a labor relations attorney in private industry. He went back in the Army for the Korean war, as a Captain in Anna Rosenbergs labor office in the Department of Defense. Afterwards, he returned to corporate labor law, retiring from Olin in 1977 as V.P. of Industrial Relations. He was widely recognized as a proponent of employer prerogatives in labor relations, building on the thinking of Boulware and other corporate employee relations leaders before him. Before retiring, he worked with John M. Olin to transform the Olin Foundation into a powerful and well-endowed underwriter of ideas. O'Connell then ran the Foundation before again retiring in 1982. He was an ardent free market conservative who served on the board of National Review with his friend William F. Buckley. His first wife, Alice (Costuma), daughter of a New York City Deputy Police Chief, died a few years after their marriage. He was then married to Mary (Reinhart) who lives in California. His third wife, Marjorie (Furry), with whom he had a daughter, Anne, is deceased. His fourth wife, Kathryn (Beitsch Grant), who he married in 1964, passed away in 1969. He has been a loving parent to her sons Arthur Grant, William Grant and Anthony Grant for 44 years. He married Eleanor (Tremoreux) in 1971 and she survives him, as does Anne, Arthur, William and Anthony and their families.
Published in The New York Times on June 30, 2008
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