Cover photo for Neil Hugh Ward's Obituary
1938 Neil 2020

Neil Hugh Ward

April 6, 1938 — August 22, 2020

Torrance –

Neil Ward, Sr., age 82, passed away on August 22, 2020 at Kaiser South Bay Medical Center after a battle with cancer.

Mr. Ward is survived by his wife, Alice, three children: sons Joseph, Neil, Jr., and daughter Karen. He also leaves behind two grandchildren, Leyla Ward, and Dylan Ward. Neil and Alice married in 1970 and had celebrated 50 years of marriage this past May.

Neil is a veteran of the Navy, where he served as a Petty Officer Second Class on the USS Point Defiance. The discipline and patriotism he learned in the Navy never left him, as friends and family will attest. He was born and grew up in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, the son of Cornelius and Rose Ward, and loving brother to sister Betty Ward. As he grew older, he became an adept swimmer and lifeguard, spending summers on the beaches of New Jersey. The water always called to him. He eventually moved and relocated to the West Coast to raise his family in the South Bay of Southern California, where he loved to walk for miles at a time at the Redondo Beach Pier, making friends there, with whom he kept in contact for decades. He also traveled to Laguna Beach each summer beginning in 1978 bringing paradise to family, extended family, friends, and, most recently, to his grandchildren.

His success as an educator can be attributed to his work ethic and natural passion for people, inspired by his Jesuit education at Saint Joseph's University. Neil infused teaching mathematics with behaviors that reflected critical thought and responsible action on moral and ethical issues. “Don’t call the alligator ugly ‘til you get to the other side,” is just one of his many lasting edicts students from Rolling Hills High School will always remember. Alongside teaching, Neil was a longtime representative then Vice President of the teacher’s union during his career, where he retired after teaching for 38 years.

Private services were held on Friday, August 28 at Green Hills Mortuary and Memorial Chapel. Burial will follow at Riverside National Cemetery in Riverside, California.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Neil Hugh Ward, please visit our flower store.


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