Michelle O'Neill

Michelle was born on April 23, 1972, and was raised in Maspeth and Long Beach, NY. She graduated from St. Mary Help of Christians Elementary School in Woodside, NY, Christ the King High School in Middle Village, NY and State University of New York at Oneonta, NY.

She was the youngest of four children –a playful, beautiful, blue-eyed, strawberry blonde everyone wanted to be around. She possessed an incredible sense of humor that endeared her to all. To say that she loved her family and her friends would be an understatement -- she was dedicated to them! She was an artist and had a special gift with words. We are very lucky to have many letters, poems and beautiful watercolors penned and painted by Michelle and signed with a smiley face and xoxo.


Michelle was diagnosed with a brain tumor (medulla blastoma) at the age of 17 while she was a senior in high school. After surgery, and while she was receiving radiation, she attended her Senior Prom and successfully graduated from high school with an award for Student of the Year. While a freshman at Nassau Community College, she received her chemotherapy treatment. She entered SUNY at Oneonta in her sophomore year, coming home for MRIs and follow up chemo. She graduated from Oneonta in May 1995 with a degree in Interdisciplinary Studies. The tumor returned with a vengeance in August of 1995, and after another year and two months of yet more chemo, Michelle lost her battle with cancer on October 28, 1996. She was 24 ½ years old.

Although Michelle's years on earth were all too short, her accomplishments are many. She touched all who knew her with her warmth, humor, courage and incredible smile, and her memory lives on in all those she continues to help through her Foundation.

She will be remembered as a loving and laughing daughter, a sensitive and talented sister, and a sincere and loyal friend to many. Michelle is survived by her parents, Carol and Richard, and sisters, Caryl Ann O'Neill-Niven and Jackie O'Neill-Walsh and big brother, Rick.