McNeill Connections: Such a Small World

Written by Harold McNeill on September 5th, 2013. Posted in Biographies


And it gets smaller with each passing hour…

On Tuesday, after our return from camping at Island View Beach, Sean mentioned that Lucas (a friend of Sean and our family) was dating girl from Oak Bay and there was a connection to our family.  A copy of the information passed to Sean is included in footer.

It turns out girlfriend’s Aunt is Debbie Ayotte (husband Giles).  Our family met the Ayotte’s (kids Marcel and Danielle) back in the 1990s when Sean played soccer at Prospect Lake and baseball at Layritz with Marcel.

When mom (Laura Skarsen) was living with us for few months we took her to visit the Ayotte’s.  During our visit we learned that when mom was in High School she had dated Debbie’s dad a few times.  After that revelation Debbie and I often joked that if things had turned out slightly different, Debbie and I might be brother and sister.  To this day, we still call each other brother and sister when we met.

Story 2

An hour later as I was cleaning the trailer, an older blue Volvo pulled up across the street and a man asked if this was the McNeill residence.  Of course the conversation was on and the couple in the car, Mickey and Lillian (Stevens), were invited in for tea.  First, he whipped the car around and parked in front of our house.  No driving challenges for that young man.

In conversation we learned that while we were away the couple had a visit from my first cousins, Charlie and Olga Crocker of Saskatoon. His mother, Mina, was my dad’s sister and they both grew up in Glaslyn/Birch Lake, where Mina married (Ned Crocker) and lived until this both passed away.IMG_6099

Mickey said they had dropped by our place a few times with Charlie and Olga but were never able to catch us at home (of course). We also learned that for several years Charlie and Mickey worked as field reps in Saskatchewan for a farm implement company.

Mickey retired several years before Charlie and after retiring, living in Winnipeg for several years.  He and Lillian then moved to the Island about 25 years back. They now live on Royal Oak Drive, only a few blocks from our home.

Now the cracker! Mickey is 96 and Lillian 93 and they have been married for 57 years. Mickey said they would have been married longer, but he was in his early forties and she in her late thirties when they finally tied the knot. Amazing.

While Lillian has some vision limitations, Mickey still easily holds a driver’s licence as evidenced by the way he whipped that Volvo around.  The couple, as you might discern from the radiant look on their faces, are an absolute delight. This is one exceptional couple and I am sure we shall see more of them in the future.

What a small world.


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  • Harold McNeill

    January 13, 2019 |

    Well, my dear, it’s that time again. How the years fly by and the little ones grow but try as you may you will have a hard time catching up to your Daddy. Lots of love young lady and may your day be special
    Love, Dad

  • Harold McNeill

    January 5, 2019 |

    Guess what? My response went to the Spam folder. Hmm, do you suppose the system is trying to tell me something?

  • Harold McNeill

    January 5, 2019 |

    Thanks, Terrance. Your comment came through but went to the Spam folder. Have pulled it out and approved. Can you send another on this post to see if you name is now removed from Spam? I’m not sure why it does that. Cheers, Harold

  • Terrance

    January 5, 2019 |


  • Harold McNeill

    December 23, 2018 |

    Thanks Sis. I will be uploading as Hi-Def so the photos can be viewed full screen. Brother

  • Louise

    December 21, 2018 |

    Amazing collection of photos of the weekend ❤️❤️

  • Harold McNeill

    December 21, 2018 |

    Hi Dave,

    Not sure if you are the same Armit as was at Oak Bay PD or not. Interesting to see your comment on Danny Cain and your birthdays and family friendships. Cheers, Harold

  • Harold McNeill

    November 19, 2018 |

    Thanks, Lynn. It appears there was a problem with the comment system. Cheers, Harold

  • lynnmcneill

    November 19, 2018 |

    Hi Harold – looks great!

  • Maurice Smook

    August 13, 2016 |

    Hi Jillian,

    I don’t know if you are still checking this site but I had to respond again. February of 2017 it will be 72 years since this battle occurred.

    What caught my attention about this incident was on the Go Deep Documentary that aired on the History Channel. First of all I never known that this battle having ever occurred.

    According to my grade 3 teacher WW2 had never occurred. That grade 3 teacher stated that the WW2 and the holocaust was all propaganda. All of my classmates they believed her. I hate to say this but all I knew was that soldiers shooting at each other.

    I almost was expelled from school. My

    Mom my Dad my brother and my Uncle would have been arrested for propaganda. I paid the price. It was ironic a grade 5 teacher told me that Smooks are all commies. Dad was Conservative.

    All the Smooks that I known are all Conservative. If I had the money I would have loved to sue those two teachers.

    As I said I never heard of this Battle. If it were not for that program I would have never had known.

    I started to do more researching to find out more about the history of this battle. The narrator of Go Deep mentioned the names of the pilots who died that battle.

    I missed 20 minutes of that program but the camera crew had the camera’s pointed towards the sign with the names of the deceits. That is how I known.

    According to the narrator There are three who are still missing. W.J. Jackson, Harry Smook and A. Duckworth. A couple of months ago the staff of Go Deep have located Harry and A. Duckworths aircraft. This is on you tube. Harry and A. Duckworth craft is approx 650 feet deep in the Fjord. The individual who is heading this expansionary mission made it known he will not rest until all three of the missing pilots
    will be retrieved. I am sure that A. Duckworth’s kin are hoping for the same.

    What really puzzles me is that I have sent emails to the Smooks. Not one ever replying. I presume its the same with you. Sad. Dad rarely spoke about his family. It appears there is a big secret of the Smooks. I too assume Harry is a kin to my Dad. Harry maybe a 4th 5th cousin to my Dad. I too would like to know. Harry and A. Duckworth served and died for our country. The other is W.j. Jackson – who is also still missing – having died for our Country.

    In conclusion I still ask myself why is this a huge secret.

    If you are still checking this site please contact me. Maybe we may be kin.

    Take care.