Patrick Joseph

Patrick Joseph O’Neill (1905-1982)
Edna Mary Holyer (1917-1996)

Patrick Joseph O’Neill, known as Pat, was the third youngest of John O’Neill & Amelia (aka Minnie) Crimmins children. He was born on 21 Aug 1905 in Metz, NSW. Metz and Hillgrove were two small mining towns on opposite sides of a gorge about 30km east of Armidale. John and Minnie ran one of the hotels there, as well as other business enterprises. In 1910 they moved to Georges Creek, a mid-way point on the road between Kempsey and Armidale, where they ran a post office; they retained their liquor license and put travellers up overnight. Mary McQuade, a niece of Pat’s, wrote an extensive memoire of her early life in Georges Creek.

John died in 1921 and Minnie 1922 when John was just shy of 17 years of age.

Pat joined the police force, appointed as a probationary constable on 21 Sep 1927 (Police Gazettes, 25 Jan 1928).

In 1919 he married Maisie Elizabeth Ingram (record 11585) in Dubbo, NSW. In the 1930 electoral rolls the couple appear in Vera St, Gilgandra, though Maisie’s name is written Marie Elizabeth. In the 1932 and 1934 rolls they were in Wood St, Grenfell. In 1936 to 1943 he is described as a detective or police constable, Elgin St, Forbes, living with Maisie; she is not listed in the 1943 register when Pat was still in Elgin St, Forbes.

The Sydney Morning Herald reported on Thu 30 May 1946 that Maisie petitioned for divorce on the grounds of desertion. We are not aware that the couple had any children.

Then on 21 Apr 1947 Pat married Edna Mary Holyer in Sydney. Edna worked in communications in intelligence during WW2 at Garden Islands NSW.

By 1954 Pat is listed as a detective sergeant, and the couple lived at 225 Dunbar St, Stockton, Newcastle. In 1958 Pat lived at 8 McCormack St, Newcastle, but Edna was not listed at that address. The couple divorced in 1959. They had three children.

Pat passed away on 19 Jun 1982 at Port Macquarie.

Edna was diagnosed with multiple scelerosis in 1967 and passed away on 17 Oct 1996 in Adelaide.