John R. Veal
Oakdale — John R. “Bob” Veal, 81, of Oakdale, passed away Friday, Feb. 24, 2023, after a courageous battle with AML. He was born July 21, 1941, in New London, to the late John J. and Elsie O. (Olshevski) Veal. He grew up in Quaker Hill the middle of three brothers and attended local schools. He played baseball in his early years and was proud to win the league championship with his team. After graduating from New London High School, he enlisted in the Army National Guard and was honorably discharged after service.
In 1963, he met his future wife, Roberta Marie Santora, ad they married Aug. 28, 1965. Her parents, the late Angelo and Pasqualine Santora, welcomed him into the family. They moved to Chesterfield, where they lived for 57 years, raising their family there. They had three children, John James Veal of Waterford, Doreen L. (Veal) Long of Uncasville and Robert John Veal (Michelle) of Mystic and four grandchildren, Jessica M. Long of Brooklyn, Conn., Cevan J. Long and his wife Erica of Norwich, Hailey E. Veal and Kayla M. Veal of Mystic.
John enjoyed playing pool and would often share a game or two with his children and grandchildren. At any time of the day or night, you would hear pool balls hitting together as he played a quick game in between watching his favorite sports programs (Go Huskies). He was an avid duckpin bowler, playing in many leagues over the years and represented the New London Lodge of Elks, of which he was a lifelong member, in tournaments. He won many individual and team trophies that proudly are displayed in his home.
John liked being outdoors and loved trout fishing in the spring and snapper blue fishing in late summer. He could often be found in the very early morning hours at a stream or dock, many times in the company of his children or grandchildren. Gardening was also a favorite hobby of his, and every summer the family was sure to have a supply of tomatoes and cucumbers.
He worked at Electric Boat for 10 years before moving to Millstone Nuclear Power Plant as a pipefitter/welder and was a member of Local 777. He retired in July 2000 to enjoy the next stage of his life. He worked with many good friends, and they would continue to gather for breakfast and enjoy each other’s company and reminisce.
He was predeceased by his parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles, cousins, niece and sister-in-law.
He leaves his loving family to remember and miss him forever, including his wife, children and grandchildren listed above; his brothers, Joseph Veal of California, wife Barbara, sisterin-law Mary Veal and their family; Wilson Veal and wife Carol of Quaker Hill and their family; brother-in-law Robert Beebe of Florida and his family; and all the friends he made along the way.
Family and friends are invited to funeral services that will begin at noon Monday, March 6, at Thomas L. Neilan & Sons Funeral Home, 12 Ocean Ave., New London. Interment will follow at Cedar Grove cemetery, 638 Broad St., New London.