Cecil Eugene Neff Jr.
1932 - 2021
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Cecil Eugene Neff, Jr

West Chester - Cecil (Gene) Eugene Neff Jr., 88 of West Chester, passed away on Monday, January 11, 2021. Born to Cecil Eugene Sr and Methyl (nee Caswell) Neff on February 28, 1932 in Easton, Ohio. Gene graduated Eaton High School in 1950; while there he won more than 15 sports related letters, more than anyone in the school's history. Gene led the school in state tournaments in basketball, football, baseball, and track; and has been named All American in the Preble County Hall of Fame. While offered over 40 college scholarships, Gene accepted a basketball scholarship from the University of Kentucky (UK) and coached by Adolph Rupp, the team won the South Eastern Championship in 1951. As a Junior, he signed a pro baseball contract with the Detroit Tigers, where he played until he was honored to serve in the Special Services in the US Army during the Korean War.After the war Gene received his bachelor's degree and master's from UK. Where he met and married the love of his life Jane and had two children. Gene was part of the original teachers who established the Lakota School District, where he and Jane taught and coached until 1968. Gene then worked for General Electric both in the plant and as the director of the GEEAA Park for over 50 years and served on the board of the GE Credit Union. Gene also played for the senior Olympics in volleyball and basketball where he won numerous medals during his tenure.Preceded in death by his parents, Cecil Eugene and Methyl Neff, his wife, Jane T. Neff and sister, Martha Belle Parks. Gene is survived by his two loving children, Roger (Kimberly) Neff and Kelly (Doug) Bates, four grandchildren, Gabe Neff and Douglas, Brenden and Morgan Bates. A visitation will be held on Friday, January 15th from 10:00am-11:00am with a funeral service at 11:00am all at Mueller Funeral Home, 6791 Tylersville Road, Mason, Ohio 45040. Interment to follow in West Chester Cemetery. MASKS ARE REQUIRED and social distancing will be observed. In lieu of flowers the family asks that you make a donation to the University of Kentucky Athletics in Gene's name at KFund@uky.edu. Mueller Funeral Home is honored to serve the Neff Family. 513-398-9100.






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Published in The Cincinnati Enquirer from Jan. 12 to Jan. 14, 2021.
MEMORIAL EVENTS
JAN
15
Visitation
10:00 - 11:00 AM
JAN
15
Funeral service
11:00 AM
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22 entries
January 17, 2021
Pam Hughes Schaible
Friend
January 16, 2021
I played basketball with Gene and the team and was the only out of state player (Indiana) to be invited to play with Gene and his teammates this past 15 plus years. I enjoyed chatting and playing with Gene and considered him "Mr. Cool" on the court as several, at times, could get nearly out of hand. He always kept me up to date on basketball happenings. Thank you, Gene.
Jim Glascock
January 15, 2021
Our condolences to the Neff family. My dad, Don Hughes, loved playing basketball with Gene and the Senior Olympic team all those years! We enjoyed knowing Gene also. Ken & Pam Schaible (I hope my photo posts).
Pam Schaible
January 15, 2021
Our condolences to the Neff family. My dad, Don Hughes, loved playing basketball with Gene and the Senior Olympic team all those years! We enjoyed knowing Gene also. Ken & Pam Schaible (I hope my photo posts).
Pam Schaible
January 15, 2021
Roger, Kelly, and families,
I was so sorry to hear of your dad's passing. I have wonderful memories of him and your mom and all the fun we had in the HyCrest neighborhood. They were always so nice and welcoming! My fondest memory is of when I worked at The Root Beer Stand and Mr Neff would come in for a root beer float. His smile lit the place up while he thoroughly enjoyed every last drop of that float!
I always knew your dad was "sporty" but I had no idea just HOW accomplished he was! He sure left you all a wonderful legacy and lots of memories that I'm sure you're proud of.
Prayers of comfort and peace for your whole family.
Jenny (Grace) Nichols
Neighbor
January 15, 2021
Gene was a wonderful neighbor and friend. We miss him terribly.
Kris Stanford
Neighbor
January 15, 2021
If I had only known that Gene was really named Cecil, what fun we would have had! Gene was one of the kindest and humblest men I've ever known. His friendship was gained on the basketball court with the other elder Senior athletes who took me and the next generation of players under their wings. Gene was a tough competitor, excellent shooter, and and all around great guy! Thanks Gene for your much valued friendship and guidance. Deepest condolences to his family and close friends!
Bob Rusbosin
Friend
January 14, 2021
We will miss Gene terribly on Sunday morning in the pew at church. We sat with he and Jane for some years before she passed away and we have shared the pew with him every week since until the pandemic hit. Gene and hubby Dick had such a good talk each week before church began. They enjoyed talking about the grandkids and the sports and activities they were engaged with and of course they talked KY basketball. It is with a sad heart that we will no longer be able to enjoy his love and warmth, but we rejoice knowing he and Jane are United with Jesus for eternity. Blessings and Praises, Dick and Patty Brown
Dick and Patty Brown
January 14, 2021
My deepest sympathy to Roger, Kelly and family in your loss. I worked with Gene many years at GEEAA Park. Gene was always a gentleman and a fine person.
Ann (Brockman) Luken
Friend
January 14, 2021
Kelly and Roger,
My deepest sympathy. I have fond memories growing up in the Hycrest subdivision and babysitting the two of you on Shadybrook. I never realized how many competitive sports your dad excelled at. His demeanor was so nice. I’m sure God will have a special spot on his team for him. Take care and you’re in my prayers.
Terri (Grace) Hooks
Neighbor
January 14, 2021
Gene receiving his medal
Connie Sternberg
Friend
January 14, 2021
Gene's Team
Connie Sternberg
Friend
January 14, 2021
Senior Olympics
Connie Sternberg
Friend
January 14, 2021
Gene was a dear friend to Al Royse and myself and we have known him for many years. We have known him to be a man of integrity and high morals. He was a good Christian man. We thought of him as family and would have done anything for him. His deep love of UK athletics was inspiring to all of us UK fans. We will miss him so much and our thoughts and prayers are with his wonderful family. Although we didn't have much contact with his family directly we feel we know them because they were his pride and joy and he talked to us about them on a daily basis. We were honored to be a small part of his life for so many years and we feel blessed by that. We will never forget him.
Connie Sternberg
Friend
January 13, 2021
I had Coach Neff for PE and served him for two years as a varsity basketball manager. He had such an outstanding and dry sense of humor. He made PE and basketball practice, which were fun, funnier! Even when he was pointing out a miscue, his barbs always made us laugh. And even though he was serious about his profession, he never prohibited us from laughing. Such a gentle man and a gentleman! No matter where Lakota played basketball, his Dad was always there in the stands behind our bench (also a gentleman!) And neither of them ever criticized an official.... Talk about family values!
I saw him play basketball, baseball, volleyball and golf (A PGA Professional!) Athletically, he could do anything well. But he was the humblest athlete I have ever known. Above all, he was a role model for all of us. My deepest condolences, and shared grief, to his family.
Dick Gilgrist
Richard Gilgrist
Student
January 13, 2021
Have so many memories of Gene Neff....from serving on the board of trustees at the GEEAA park with him...was so educational and what a great group of members to represent our GE park...You did a great job and need to be congratulated...you will be missed by many people. I know that you and Jane where members of Faith Community UMC and we all will be praying for the family during this difficult time.
Kenneth Stidham
Friend
January 13, 2021
May God bless you and your family in this time of sorrow. Many fond memories of Gene from the HyCrest days and beyond being a dear friend of my parents. Deepest sympathy for your loss....he was indeed a fine man.
Kathie Grace Roberts
Kathie Grace Roberts
Neighbor
January 13, 2021
Gene & Tom in NY 1987
This is a picture of Gene and me in New York in 1987
thomas wahl
Friend
January 13, 2021
To his amazing family:

Gene was the best person I have ever met. We started at GE Aviation on the same day, he in the recreation GEEAA department and I was accepted in a special training program. Sports were also important to me so it was only a matter of time that we connected shortly after our employment. He asked to run the softball program in the late 60's and I gladly accepted.

We played tennis together, he taught me how to play competitive golf and we often played basketball together.
Through his insistence I agreed in 1984 to join the GEEAA employees Board where I became the Park Commission Chairperson and later the Board President. A year later is when a company from New York, SHOPCO wanted to purchase the 141 acre GEEAA Park facility in Springdale. That involvement made us ever closer as 3 years later the City of Springdale rejected the last proposed PUD for the property by them. Gene and I were involved to some level every week due to that situation. We traveled to NY by invitation of SHOPCO (special sporting event) and we stayed involved for many years to come. I was asked to be a part of the Board again shortly after I took and early retirement in 2000 and I know it was due to our previous involvements and great respect for each other. That led to the "Crossing at the Park" community that we planned to save the Park from financial difficulties in early 2002. Throughout the years we never had a disagreement and he is far and away the finest person I have ever known. He and his wife Jane were the best of the best representing our country to the world.

We remained friends to the end of his life as we often called each other and got together at Bob Evans for a bit of tasty food. I am proud to say that when a new required PUD impacted the park property in 2017 I had Gene honored at the celebration party right inside the Park grounds on Ball Diamond 1 that year, by a VP from Strategic Capital Partners, from Indiana. Gene was delighted and I was so happy for him as he was so worthy due to his outstanding contribution's to the success of the Park Program for well over 50 years.

I miss him already.
Rgds, Tom
Thomas Wahl
Friend
January 12, 2021
We taught school together at Lakota , vacationed together in Fl and Hawaii played basketball with him on Lakota faculty team. There are so many fond memories that will be cherished forever. I spoke with Gene during the Christmas holidays and we remenist about the good old days . My sympathy goes to Kelly, Roger and family. May god bless you during these trying times.
George Estes
Coworker
January 12, 2021
Mr. Neff was a positive influence to me, my class of '65 and Lakota High School - always placing our standards high and accountability higher. Thank you Mr. Neff - so fortunate you shared my high school years with me. Rest in Peace with Mrs. Neff. Thank you.
Karen Phillips
January 12, 2021
Dear Kelly, Roger and family,
We have known your dad, Gene and your mom Jane for over 50 years.They were very good friends and neighbors. We went on trips together, some in our motor home. He always had a smile on his face. His Golf outings at GE Park were a lot of fun. The prizes he gave out were unreal and they made us laugh so much. If we needed a favor he was the first to volunteer.
We will miss him deeply........He was a true friend........Our memories of him great and will remain with us for a long time..........Love and prayers....Dick and Teresa Grace.
Dick Grace
Friend
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