Dennis Alan O'Neal
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Debra Cohen O'Neal
BLOUNTS CREEK - Dr. Dennis Alan O'Neal, 58, and wife, Debra Cohen O'Neal, 56, died Sunday, March 31, 2013 in a plane crash. Their beloved pet Golden Retriever, Amelia, was also killed in the accident. A memorial service will be held today at 1 p.m. at Rock Springs Center, 4025 NC Highway 43 N., Greenville.
If there's one thing you could say about Dennis and Debbie O'Neal, it's that they lived life to the fullest. They loved, they lived, and they laughed their whole way through their marriage. They never stopped moving forward, and their love for each other was eclipsed only by their love for their children and their dog Amelia. Avid pilots, sailors, bikers, and all around adventurers, they gave everything 100%. Debbie was a passionate teacher and instructor, and touched so many lives through her work that it wasn't uncommon for many of her students and mentees to refer to her as a second mother. Dennis was an optometrist who was more than just a doctor; he was a humanitarian. He truly cared for his patients with a compassion that was unrivaled in his field. Both were avid members in North Carolina communities from Beaufort County to Boone. Proud of their Jewish heritage and darn proud to be Damn Yankees, the amazing couple leaves behind three loving children, Juliana, Douglas, and Kevin. Dennis is also survived by a sister, Martha Clark and husband, Kevin; and a brother, Michael O'Neal; and Debbie is also survived by a brother, Fred Cohen and wife, Dhana; sister, Jan Cohen Weiss and partner, Rick; and mother, Lorna Cohen; in addition to a network of friends and family that extends around the globe.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to the Beaufort County Association for the Blind, PO Box 491, Washington, NC 27889, or Wright Flight, PO Box 2105, Kill Devil Hills, NC 27948.
On-line condolences at
Arrangements by Wilkerson Funeral Home & Crematory, Greenville.

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Published in The Daily Reflector on Apr. 3, 2013.
No memorial events are currently scheduled. To offer your sympathy during this difficult time, you can now have memorial trees planted in a National Forest in memory of your loved one.
Memories & Condolences
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26 entries
April 27, 2013
Dennis made us all smile and laugh so much !
Here are photos from the mid 70s
I met Debbie when they came to the Lakeland Fly-in 5 years ago..what a fun loving pair.
They will be greatly missed
Bill Alford
April 7, 2013
To the family of Dr. Dennis O'Neal and his wife Debbie, I did not know Debbie, but Dr. O'Neal was a wonderful eye caregiver. I will definately miss seeing him, and want to pray for the families that are now missing them so much! I just found out about this accident at my church this morning, so please know I am so sorry to miss the service. Their legacy will live forever with family. God bless you all during this time, Caring, Lillian Jordan, Blounts Creek, NC 27814
April 6, 2013
Becky Cronin
April 5, 2013
My is so short. You and your lovely wife will be missed so much.
Pamela Prince-Burrows
April 5, 2013
i remember being a patient of dr. o'neal and how kind he was. may god bless the family during this time of sorrow
paul&hazel miller winslow
April 5, 2013
My prayers are with your family.
Rose Mary Sublette
April 5, 2013
Debbie was a peer instructor when we started the English Language Academy at ECU. I will remember her as someone of great energy. She had a natural positive attitude and believed that good helpful ideas would always work out somehow. Her contributions to internationalism through her international students will live on thanks to her caring commitment to them. God Bless Debbie and Dennis with His mercy and grace.
Marolyn McDiarmid
April 5, 2013
I graduated with Dennis from Silver Creek High School in 1973.
He was a very special person inside and out. Our class President and Salutatorian. We will truly miss Dennis and Debbie!
LuAnn and Larry Richmer
April 5, 2013
Lisa Cook
April 5, 2013
Wayne and Debbie Rieger
April 5, 2013
5 days later, and my heart is still breaking. We were all blessed to have been a part of their lives. May Peace come to all who have been hurt by this horrible loss.
Yvonne Fields Lamb
April 4, 2013
So sorry to hear of such a tragic loss. Dr. O'Neal was a wonderful doctor & friend. My heart and prayers go out to the family.
Tammy Edwards
April 4, 2013
They were our friends, neighbors, and we were his patients. What a gapping hole has been left in our shocked and stunned community! They are and always will be missed here in River Hills! They were both people to be admired and respected and looked up to. Their loss is such a tragedy! Amelia was so beloved by both of them. She will be missed as well. Our hearts go out to their children and parents, brothers and sisters. What an incredible and unfair loss to us all.
Al and Judy Horvath
April 3, 2013
Jeff and I are are so saddened by the loss of our friends.
Our thoughts and prayers go out to their family and co workers.
Rima Jakub
April 3, 2013
I have never met any of you, my family and I live on Kearns Ave. in Winston-Salem, NC. Juliana, Douglas, and Kevin, you have been in our thoughts and prayers. Having lost my mom at the young age of 54 I know how difficult this is. I am so sorry for your loss. May God give you all a peace that surpasses all understanding.
Angie Brockman
April 3, 2013
Melissa Cox Rouse
April 3, 2013
Dr. O'Neal was my eye doctor when he practiced in Greenville. He was so warm and soft spoken and always took the time to compliment his patients. He made you feel like a friend rather than a patient. He will surely be missed. Rest in peace Dr. O'Neal.
Melissa Cox Rouse
April 3, 2013
Steve and Melissa Powell
April 3, 2013
Deepest sympathy to the family. I only met them once - when my husband and I rented their place in the mountains. We had trouble getting the key and to solve the issue they both flew out to personally deliver us another one! We were amazed and charmed. These are the kind of people you do not forget. So sorry for your loss.
Kerri and Paul Vos
April 3, 2013
Prayers for all the families....Dr.O'Neals was a great person...will miss him so much...he will continue to share his love and happiness...
Karen Casey-Wooten
April 3, 2013
Ron and Marcia Zihar
April 3, 2013
Jackie and Harry Gautier.
April 3, 2013
Phyllis M. West
April 3, 2013
Angelene Venters
April 3, 2013
Our hearts and prayers are with Dr. O'Neal's family, his staff and all of his patients which he cared so deeply for (we were his patients). He was the most caring doctor that we knew. He had a wonderful gift of caring which came from his heart. Dr.O'Neal we will miss you greatly. We didn't know Mrs. O'Neal but from what we hear she was the same kind of person.
Mike and Betty Beacham
April 3, 2013
Melanie and Doug Schindler
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