Ralph 'Neal' Connolly Jr., 65 - Zanesville, Ohio

Ralph C. Connolly Jr. (Neal), 65, passed away Tuesday, July 26, 2011, at Morrison House following a brave, hard battle with pancreatic cancer.

He was born August 26, 1945, in Calhoun County, West Virginia, a son of the late Ralph and May Boice Connolly.

In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by three brothers, Gerry, Dan, and Frank Connolly; and five sisters, Irene Connolly, Carolyn Rogers, Vada Kovaleski, Irma Connolly, and Inez Mullins.

Neal was a gentle, soft-spoken man who was a favorite to all his family and will be sadly missed, especially by his sisters and brothers-in-law, Katy and Mike Chapin and Ina and Jim Blatt.

Neal proudly served his country in the United States Marine Corps and while a Marine, served a 13-month tour of duty in Vietnam. After his discharge, he worked several years at the Gould Foil Division in McConnelsville. He trained and raced horses in Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Florida.

In later years he partnered with his brother, Dan, and formed The Connolly Brothers Woodworking Shop in Caldwell where together they constructed hand made furniture. Neal was also an accomplished artist and loved to paint landscapes and farm scenes depicting his beloved horses.

Neal has generously bequeathed his body to the Ohio University School of Medicine in the hopes that through research, maybe something good will result from his experience and someone else may benefit in the form of new treatments or perhaps even a cure.

Following his request, there will be no calling hours observed. There will be a memorial service for family and friends at a later date.

If anyone would like to honor Neal by making a donation, please consider Genesis Hospice or Morrison House located at 713 Forest Avenue, Zanesville, OH 43701.