From handling cash to giving out loans, longtime Middletown resident Bill O’Neal has seen it all in the banking world. Now, after 47 years in the business, he will pack up his briefcase for the last time, as he gets ready to retire from PNC Bank.


    From handling cash to giving out loans, longtime Middletown resident Bill O’Neal has seen it all in the banking world. Now, after 47 years in the business, he will pack up his briefcase for the last time, as he gets ready to retire from PNC Bank.
    “It’s just the right time,” O’Neal said.
    O’Neal started his career in the bookkeeping department in Bank of Delaware’s Odessa office when he was 18 years old. After only nine months, however, his position was eliminated. That didn’t stop O’Neal, who became a teller, then later a teller supervisor at the same branch.
    O’Neal became the branch manager of the Odessa branch in 1973, but two years later he was assigned the job of opening a new branch on Main Street in Middletown.
    He said PNC bought the Bank of Delaware in the mid-’90s, and he’s been working for the company ever since.
    O’Neal, now almost 65 and the vice president of the business banking unit, said it is his coworkers and clients that he will miss the most after his retirement is official Aug. 6.
    “It’s always rewarding to look back and say ‘I remember giving that person a loan or helping this person,’ ” he said. “That type of relationship with my customers is something I’m certainly going to miss.”
    O’Neal said he’s not going far, though. He’ll be seeing many of his customers out in the community, as that is where he spends most of his time.
    He is very active in the Middletown-Odessa Rotary Club, he serves on the board of directors at the M.O.T. Jean Birch Senior Center and was recently named president of the Board of Directors for the Middletown Area Chamber of Commerce.
    “I’ve always said that the community has awarded me by allowing me to keep my job and buying services from me, so I want to give back to the community,” O’Neal said.
    O’Neal said aside from staying active in his community organizations, post-retirement plans include traveling and spending time with his family.
    “It’s nice because at a drop of a hat, if we want to go somewhere, we can do it,” he said.
    PNC Bank Manager Bonnie Lewis, who has known O’Neal since 2000, said he has always been easy to work with and she will miss his wealth of knowledge.
    “He really had the ability to combine a large company and a community together so they get the best out of each other,” she said. “He has really figured out how to merge the two together.”
    Bob Hess, vice president of the Middletown Area Chamber of Commerce, said O’Neal is always there to help those who need it.
    “I’m a person who moved here five years ago from New Jersey, and this community has welcomed us with open arms,” he said. “Bill O’Neal has been a large part of that.”
    Bill’s wife, Millie, said she is proud of her husband for dedicating much of his life to serving his community.
    “The more he’s involved, the happier he is,” she said.