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C. William O’Neill


Dec 16, 2021
article - C. William O'Neill

C. William O’Neill[1] (February 14, 1916 – August 20, 1978) was an American Republican politician from Ohio.

American judge
C. William O’Neill
Chief Justice of the Ohio Supreme Court
In office
April 3, 1970  August 20, 1978
Preceded by Kingsley A. Taft
Succeeded by Robert E. Leach
Associate Justice of the Ohio Supreme Court
In office
November 30, 1960  April 4, 1970
Preceded by John Weld Peck II
Succeeded by Leonard J. Stern
59th Governor of Ohio
In office
January 14, 1957  January 12, 1959
Lieutenant Paul M. Herbert
Preceded by John William Brown
Succeeded by Michael DiSalle
37th Ohio Attorney General
In office
January 8, 1951  January 7, 1957
Governor Frank Lausche
John William Brown
Preceded by Herbert S. Duffy
Succeeded by William B. Saxbe
87th Speaker of the Ohio House of Representatives
In office
January 6, 1947  January 2, 1949
Preceded by Jackson E. Betts
Succeeded by John F. Cantwell
Personal details
Born (1916-02-14)February 14, 1916
Marietta, Ohio, U.S.
Died August 20, 1978(1978-08-20) (aged 62)
Columbus, Ohio, U.S.
Political party Republican
Spouse(s) Betty Hewson
Alma mater Marietta College, Moritz College of Law
Military service
Allegiance  United States
Branch/service  United States Army
Years of service 1943–1946
Battles/wars World War II

. . . C. William O’Neill . . .

He was born in Marietta, Ohio. He was the 59th Governor of Ohio. He graduated from both Marietta College (1938) and The Ohio State UniversityMoritz College of Law (1942). While at Marietta he joined The Delta Upsilon University.

O’Neill served as a state representative and as Speaker of the House. He was then elected the State Attorney General in 1950, being the youngest person elected to the office at age 34.[1] He served from 1951–1957, when he was elected to the governorship. O’Neill served until 1959. He was defeated for re-election due to his support of the controversial proposed “right to work” amendment to the Ohio Constitution. He served on the Ohio Supreme Court from 1960 until his death serving as an associate justice, then Chief Justice. O’Neill was the only Ohioan to serve in top leadership positions in the legislative, executive and judicial branches of Ohio.[1]

O’Neill was married to Betty Hewson on July 29, 1945, and they had two children. He died August 20, 1978, and his funeral service was at First Community Church in Columbus. He was buried at Oak Grove Cemetery in Marietta.[1]

The O’Neill Building at the Ohio Expo Center and State Fair in Columbus, Ohio, is named in honor of O’Neill. Additionally, The C. William O’Neill Senior Citizens Center in Marietta, Ohio is named in his honor.

  1. The Supreme Court of Ohio and The Ohio Judicial System – C. William O’Neill “As he explained to the Columbus Dispatch in a 1975 interview the initial ‘C’. stands for nothing; rather it was a compromise between his mother, who wanted to name him Charles, and his father, who did not want a junior in the family.”

. . . C. William O’Neill . . .

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. . . C. William O’Neill . . .