Duggan's Serra Mortuary
500 Westlake Avenue
Daly City, CA 94014
Celebration of Life
Saturday, Jun. 15, 2019
11:30 AM
St. Thomas the Apostle Church
3835 Balboa Street
San Francisco, CA
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Hugh O'Connor

1934 - 2019 Obituary Condolences
Hugh O'Connor Obituary
Hugh J. O'Connor

March 29, 1934-June 8, 2019

Hugh J. O'Connor died peacefully on June 8, 2019 at his home in Millbrae. A longtime resident of San Francisco and Daly City, Hugh was born to Hugh O'Connor and Nora O'Connor (O'Dowd) on March 29, 1934 at Stanford Hospital in San Francisco. He grew up in the Richmond District and always had a fondness for his local neighborhood and was proud to be a native San Franciscan. Hugh attended Star of the Sea Grammar School with his sister and two brothers. He graduated from St. Ignatius High School in 1951 and went on to the University of San Francisco where he studied mathematics, a subject in which he had a lifelong interest.

In 1965 he met Diana Schmeltzer and they were married in Los Angeles at Precious Blood Church in October 1966 and enjoyed 52 years of marriage. Hugh was a beloved dad to his four children, Kevin (and Patricia), Marion (and Scott Askins), Nora (and Anne Keller) and Paul (and Claire). He had seven grandchildren ranging from John (age 21) to Jacob, Kaitlyn, Lauren, Audrey, Lila, and Nathan (age 3). Hugh greatly enjoyed his grandchildren. He felt very fortunate that he could see them often and attend their sporting events and recitals, while also staying in touch by playing "Words With Friends."

Hugh entered the military in 1956 and completed his basic training at Fort Ord, California. He went on to serve in West Germany for two years and remained in the reserves until 1962.

Hugh spent 31 years of his career as a Surveyor in the Civil Engineering Division of the City of San Francisco and worked on many interesting projects, including the restoration of the cable cars in the early 1980s and the rebuilding of the Embarcadero following the 1989 earthquake. The job, combined with his affinity for maps, made Hugh "the original GPS of San Francisco" decades before Google Maps. His first jobs in the 1940s, which he always looked back on fondly, were in Golden Gate Park where he managed the burro rides and the carousel, as well as working at Kezar Stadium.

Hugh's Catholic faith was a constant in his life, and he was an active parishioner of St. Andrew's Church in Daly City for many years where he would faithfully serve as an usher each Sunday. Hugh retained his strong connection to St. Ignatius, joining his classmates at reunions and lunches.

Hugh was a long-time member of the United Irish Cultural Center in San Francisco. He also had a passion for reading newspapers, and it was hard to surprise him with a news story that he was not already aware of. He enjoyed listening to sports on the radio and was a lifelong baseball fan spanning the eras from the Seals to the Giants. Hugh also appreciated art and continued developing his drawing and painting skills throughout his life.

In addition to his wife and children, Hugh is survived by his sister (Sister Noreen O'Connor, CSJ) and his brother (Maury O'Connor). He was preceded in death by his brother, James O'Connor in 2016.

As a family we are deeply saddened by the loss of Hugh, and he will truly be missed by all those who were fortunate to have him in their lives. The family also wants to thank all the wonderful people who helped care for Hugh at the end of his life.

A celebration of his life will be held for Hugh on Saturday, June 15, 2019 at 11:30am at St. Thomas the Apostle Church, 3835 Balboa Street, San Francisco. Parking is available in the schoolyard off 39th Avenue. Private interment at Holy Cross Cemetery in Colma.
In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation to the Redwood City Catholic Worker House or a .


Published in San Francisco Chronicle from June 12 to June 15, 2019
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