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Paul Vancil


1951 - 2018 Obituary Condolences
Paul Vancil Obituary
Paul R. Vancil

October 15, 1951 - June 8, 2018

Chapel Hill

Paul Robert Vancil passed away on June 8th, 2018 at the age of 66 from natural causes.

Paul was born in Evanston, Illinois, on October 15th, 1951, to parents Lyla and Cecil Vancil; the family later moved to Toledo, Ohio. Paul graduated from University of Missouri-Columbia with a degree in journalism in 1972. He spent time as a journalist and editor for The Memphis Press-Scimitar in the 1970's and early 1980's before attending law school at UNC-Chapel Hill, where he graduated in 1985. During that time in Chapel Hill he also worked for the Durham Morning Herald and local radio station WCHL, serving as a news reporter.

Paul began his law career in Atlanta, Georgia working at Webb, Carlock, Copeland and Stair before establishing his own firm of O'Mahony and Vancil, LLP. Following Atlanta, he began his independent practice and expanded to North and South Carolina, and he was dedicated to keeping his services affordable to clients. He and his family returned to Chapel Hill, North Carolina in the summer of 1999.

Aside from working as an attorney, Paul enjoyed early morning walks at UNC, which he considered the most beautiful campus in the US. He placed a great value on education and had a sharp sense of humor. He enjoyed all kinds of music--particularly folk music--throughout his life; he played guitar from the time he was a teenager and learned the piano later in life. Paul's passion for history, news media, and academia led him to spend his time reading endless biographies and exploring college campuses. His resistance to technology was legendary; he will be remembered by friends as one of the last known owners of a flip-phone. Neighbors have remembered him as "always there with a warm smile, a friendly wave, or a pleasant and supportive conversation." His love for animals was demonstrated by his membership with the Humane Society and his joy of taking care of family pets.

He is preceded in death by parents Lyla and Cecil and brother Mark. He is survived by wife, Leigh, children Robb, Kate, Kyra and Lauren, sister Gail and dogs Emi and Andy. He will be remembered as a loving father, a generous soul, and an endless supply of dad jokes.

No service is currently planned. Towards the end if his life, Paul became passionate about ending gun violence, in his memory donations can be made to the Save Our Lives movement. https://marchforourlives.com/donate/

As his mother told him once, "So be it."
Published in The News & Observer on June 15, 2018
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