Obituary of Matthew Ryan O'Neil
Matthew Ryan O’Neil, a man full of love and vibrant life, passed away unexpectedly on Thursday, February 10, 2022 in Charleston, South Carolina. Matthew was a beloved son, devoted brother, and cherished friend. He was 36 years old.
Matthew was the life of every party and found friends wherever he went. His childlike excitement and enthusiasm drew in everyone around him, and he never failed to make people laugh with his wit and easy humor. He loved spending time outdoors, particularly with his furry little sister Anna, and embraced fitness in order to better himself.
Matt was a consummate creative who centered much of his life around music and art. After graduating from North Allegheny Senior High School in Wexford, Pennsylvania, he earned his Bachelor of Science degree in Music Education from Slippery Rock University. He spent many years teaching music as a band director to countless students and remained a mentor and friend to many of those students to this day. He studied and created art voraciously, constantly learning new techniques while pursuing his Graphic Design degree from Trident Technical College in South Carolina; and was working on his graduating portfolio show at the time of his passing. Matt always sought to combine his great loves – music, art, and people – into works that would touch the hearts of everyone around him.
Matthew was endlessly talented, full of ideas and passion that overflowed in every area of his life. Perhaps his largest legacy, though, is the many loved ones he leaves behind. Matt loved generously and with an open heart, and all those who were touched by his life felt that love from him and are forever changed for the better because of it.
Matthew is survived by his mother, Debra; his father, Joseph; and his dog, Anna, whom he loved as his furry little sister. He is preceded in death by his older brother Jamie, and we take comfort in knowing they are together again. A memorial honoring Matthew’s life will be held in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania in the Spring. In lieu of flowers, contributions can be sent to support the thriving percussion ensembles Matthew helped create at his high school alma mater, of which he was extremely proud: NADBP (North Allegheny District Band Patrons) c/o Percussion Ensembles, PO Box 445, Wexford, PA 15090.