Raymond “Toad” O’Neal, a longtime Chelan orchardist and father of state Sen. Linda Evans Parlette, R-Wenatchee, died Tuesday at age 88.
O’Neal lived all his life on the family’s Lake Chelan property at Spader Bay Road, just west of Chelan. He operated an orchard there until his retirement.
He served in the U.S. Marine Corps during World War II and married Jessie McMonagle while on leave in 1944.
O’Neal was instrumental is starting the Echo Valley Ski Area. He and others built the ski area’s first rope tow from an old Plymouth car engine in 1955.
He is survived by his wife, Jessie; daughters Evans Parlette and Terrie O’Neal of Snohomish; grandsons Guy and Luke Evans; and one great-grandchild.