Mr. Emmett O’Neal Dannelly
Mr. Emmett O’Neal Dannelly, age 89, passed away November 19, 2023 at his home
Emmett O’Neal Dannelly was born January 18, 1934 in Samson Alabama
Mr. Emmett O’Neal Dannelly was preceded in death by his wife Joan Martha Lanza Dannelly, his father Warsaw Dannelly, his mother Mary Etta Dannelly, his sister Edith Bobrovsky
Mr. Emmett O’Neal Dannelly is survived by his son Michael Emmett Dannelly and grandson Kevin Michael Dannelly, his son David Emmett Dannelly, his son Steven Emmett Dannelly, his daughter Emily Ann Dannelly Tyler and husband Douglas Edward Tyler and granddaughter Sophie Ann Tyler Mills and husband Thomas William Mills, his sister Maxine Jackson and husband Joseph Jackson
Emmett was born in Samson Alabama on January 18, 1934 and had many stories of growing up on the family farm with his family and relatives nearby. Upon graduation from high school Emmett was offered a scholarship to play football at The University of Alabama. All of us loved to tell people of Emmett playing for Alabama. He met his wife Joan while in college and they were married and stayed married for 50 years. He loved Joan and enjoyed creating a good life with her. He loved her cooking, traveling with her, her stories and most of all her company.
Together they raised 4 children Michael, David, Steven and Emily. Emmett loved his children very much and was actively involved in their lives. He was involved in bringing the children to church, cub scouts, going on summer vacations, attending school activities, attending weddings and being there for the birth of his grandchildren. He was a much loved father.
Emmett’s favorite role in life was being Kevin and Sophie’s Pa. He enjoyed playing with them, watching them grow up and just seeing them often and finding out what they were up to. They were the apple of his eye and he had so much love for them. They grew up on what we call the farm. Emmett would love to have Kevin tag along with him and ride on the golf cart together. Sophie was called Pa’s Princess and was granted most of her wishes. It’s cute to hear Kevin and Sophie tell their stories of life on the farm with Pa and Nana.
Emmett in his early years worked for IBM for 17 years. He transferred to Durham with IBM and in 1970 he and Joan built Triangle Nursery and Garden Center from the ground up. He was the owner and operator for Triangle Nursery for 37 years. Joan and his sons, and his son in law Doug all worked with Emmett there for many years. In later years Kevin his grandson worked with him and was very helpful with the day to day operations of the nursery. Emmett was proud that Kevin to this day because he is still involved in landscaping and is very good at what he does.
While being involved with the nursery one of Emmett’s favorite sayings was his flower didn’t open if the sun didn’t shine. The coin phrase for the nursery was, For Every Blooming Thing. Emmett and his crew landscaped many places all over Durham and beyond. He was known around town and people loved to get his ear and ask him plant questions and advice. He loved the nursery and was sad when it closed in 2007. He said he would still be running it if he could. He was a hardworking man and spent most of his life working 7 days a week.
After Joan passed and the nursery closed in 2007 Emmett took to the roads to visit relatives in Florida and traveled extensively with a longtime family friend. He loved going to see his sister Maxine and her husband Joe whenever he could. He also checked in with them daily to see how they were doing. He loved traveling with our family friend for many years. They spent the winters in West Palm Beach Florida and the summers in the NC Mountains in Franklin. They went on many adventures together, enjoyed going on cruises and enjoyed sharing life together.
Emmett would travel home to Oxford many times in the last 19 years either by car, trains or planes. The train was a long trip and he said he was retired so he had time to enjoy the ride. Emmett’s children were always happy when Emmett would come back home for holidays, family special occasions and extended stays. Emmett was home the last year and a half full time. While home he enjoyed spending time on the farm with family, watching football, going out with the family and just being there together.
Emmett had a wonderful, successful, full life. He was a kind, gentle, sweet, humble person who has left many happy memories behind. He will be very missed by all the people who had the opportunity to know him. Doug and Emily especially. He was their next door neighbor who kept them hopping and kept them company. Most nights the 3 of them would be spending time together watching Jeopardy, Wheel of Fortune and two Perry Mason shows. Life on the farm will never be the same and Emmett will forever be truly missed each and every day. Heaven gained a wonderful servant. Emmett will be thought of a lot, especially when Alabama Football is on and we hear Roll Tide Roll.
A family Remembrance Dinner is being planned for Emmett
Memorial contributions can be directed to:
Bethel Christian Center
3518 Rose of Shannon Road
Durham NC 27712