4:00 pm - 7:00 pm
Friday, July 2, 2021
Jones Funeral Home Inc
1503 Union Street
Schenectady, New York, United States
Obituary of James Michael O'Connell
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Niskayuna – James M. O’Connell, 81, of Niskayuna, died at home June 29, 2021 after a long illness. He was a devoted husband, father, grandfather and friend. Born in New York City to Daniel and Margaret (Maher) O’Connell, James was a graduate of De La Salle High School and Manhattan College, where he earned a bachelor’s degree in Civil Engineering. After college, he moved to Albany and began working for the New York State Department of Transportation as an engineer. He would eventually become Deputy Chief Engineer of the Bridge Division before retiring in 2002. Among his projects were the Collar City Bridge in Troy, the Little Falls Bridge in Little Falls, and the Whitestone Bridge in New York City. James married Kathleen Burns in 1975 and they made their home in Niskayuna, where they raised their two daughters. He was an active member of Saint Kateri Tekakwitha Parish (formerly Saint Helen’s) and served on the rectory building committee there. Their daughters attended the parish school. Jim loved vacationing with friends and family on Cape Cod and he enjoyed red wine, good steaks and cheesecake. In retirement, he and Kathleen spent winters in Sarasota, FL, and he played golf weekly with his close friends. He was a fan of both the New York Yankees and the New York Giants. He is survived by his wife, Kathleen, daughters Maureen (Mark Larkin) of Arlington, MA, and Kathryn (James Marrese) of Chicago, and his grandchildren, Kelsey and Daniel Marrese. He also leaves behind his sisters, Margaret and Patricia, both of Queens, sister-in-law Mary Alice of Yonkers, niece Deirdre (Robert) Sullivan of New Jersey and nephew Matthew O’Connell of Brooklyn. He was predeceased by his parents, his brother Daniel in 2016 and his nephew Daniel in 2015. Calling hours will be Friday, July 2 from 4 to 7 pm at Jones Funeral Home, 1503 Union Street,(at McClellan St.), Schenectady. A Mass of Christian Remembrance will celebrated on Saturday, July 3 at 10 am at Saint Kateri Tekakwitha Parish, 1803 Union Street, Schenectady. A private burial service will take place at Most Holy Redeemer Cemetery in Niskayuna. Donations in his memory can be made to the Prostate Cancer Foundation at www.pcf.org or by mail: 1250 Fourth Street, Santa Monica, CA 90401. Online guestbook at www.jonesfh.net.