After 87 years of a well-lived and well-fought life, Howard W. Neely passed away on Dec. 5, 2019, in his Arroyo Grande residence with family at his side. He was a 53-year resident of his beloved city of Pleasanton. He was actively involved in the community, dedicating countless hours to committees, his church, and his family.
Howard was the son of U.S. Navy Capt. Howard Neely and Helen Adams. Howard served honorably in the U.S. Army, stationed at Fort Leonard Wood, Colorado.
He was a skilled draftsman and dedicated industrial arts and history teacher in Fremont, California, impacting many youths in the community. He was a longtime member of Pleasanton Presbyterian Church and enjoyed marching with the Balloon Platoon for many years. While serving on the Parks and Recreation Commission in Pleasanton, he was instrumental in establishing several parks for the city. He was also a part of the Affordable Housing Authority, working to ensure housing opportunities for those in challenging financial situations. Along with other community members, Howard was a catalyst for the city securing the Pleasanton Pioneer Cemetery to honor loved ones in the community for generations to come.
He loved woodworking and using every one of his collection of tools. He loved the outdoors and spending hours tending his property. He fiercely fought for what he believed in and he will be dearly missed by friends and family.
He is survived by his wife of 48 years, Kathleen; five daughters, 13 grandchildren, and 12 great-grandchildren.
In honor of his favorite event, Easter Sunrise Service, and his love of the outdoors, there will be a tree dedication at 7:30 a.m., on Sunday, Feb. 16, at Shadow Cliffs Regional Park. Afterwards, there will be a service in his honor at 2 p.m., at the Veteran’s Memorial, 301 Main St., Pleasanton. He will be buried at Pleasanton Pioneer Cemetery.