William E. “Bill” Neild
William Edward “Bill” Neild passed away peacefully at home on August 24, 2022. Born on October 5, 1936, in Beaumont, Texas, to Ida Frances Neild and Hugh Bertram Neild, Bill received his grade school education in the Beaumont public schools, graduating from Beaumont High School in 1955. He attended the University of Texas, where he became a member of Phi Gamma Delta Fraternity. After two years at the University of Texas, he joined the selective service and was drafted in the United States Army. Bill was stationed for active duty at Fort Smith, Arkansas and Fort Hood, Texas where he served as a squad leader in the training camp. He served 5 ½ years in the U.S. Army Reserves in the Engineer and Heavy Boat units.
Following the military, Bill Neild entered the family-owned construction business in 1959, where he was an active member of the company’s management team with his father, H. B. Neild, and his brother, John A. Neild Sr. What started as a family business became an enduring legacy of excellence in large-scale commercial and industrial construction. Their reputation for high quality, honesty, and well-built buildings made their family business a leader in the industry.
In November of 1985, Bill formed his own company, Neild Construction and Development Corporation. In 2022, Bill retired from active contracting and formed William E. Neild LLC. He shared his expertise consulting on various projects in the community and was highly regarded by all those involved in the process. Including developers, architects, bankers, contractors, etc. A man of integrity, he set high expectations and held everyone accountable honoring their word and commitment up until the last week of his life.
Bill Neild was an extraordinary community leader and had a true servant’s heart. He lived by the family creed passed down from his great-grandmother to his father when he arrived in America from England in 1923: “Just what you are be that, just what you say be true, straight forward act, be honest in fact, be nobody else but you.”
Bill lived this creed by example, as evidenced by his many leadership roles throughout the years. He served two two-year terms as Mayor of Beaumont (1982-1986), Chairman of the Beaumont Chamber of Commerce, member of the Board of Directors of First City Bank, past President of the Metropolitan Y.M.C.A., Chairman of the Trustees and Chairman of the Administration Board of Trinity Methodist Church, past Chairman of the Jefferson Theatre Preservation Society, Chairman of the Economic Development Foundation, member of the City of Beaumont Planning and Zoning Commission, and was appointed by the Governor to serve on the Board of Directors of the Lower Neches Valley Authority (2002-2005).
In addition to his many community and civic accomplishments, Bill loved spending as much time as possible at the family’s beach house, fishing and spending time with family and friends. In his early years, he loved sailing, skiing, cycling and had fond memories of playing handball with his cherished friends, Jerry Nathan, Benny Hughes, and Lip Norvell, three days a week at the downtown Y.M.C.A. Later in his life, he loved sharing his stories of the two memorable vacations to Lake Como, Italy with dear friends.
Friends and business associates considered “Pop” to be honorable and dependable, living his life with integrity. His faith and family were the highest priorities in his life. He took every opportunity to share an encouraging word, write a personal note, or make a phone call to check in with family members.
He is preceded in death by his parents, Ida Frances and Hugh Bertram Neild; brother, John A. Neild Sr.; and spouses, Patricia Cantella Neild and Nancy Brooks Neild.
He is survived by his wife, Kay Outlaw Neild; sister, Nanny Smith (Tip) of Nacogdoches; children, Franne Neild Stewart (Bennett) of Cypress, Catherine “Scootie” Neild Clark (Joe) of Beaumont, and Nancy Lee Neild Gupton (Wade) of Waco; stepchildren, James Michael Outlaw (Kim) of Houston, Patrick Carter Outlaw and Eleanor Kate Throop of Beaumont, Dr. Christine Cantella Putnam (Russell) and Richard Chadwick Cantella (Alison) of Austin; grandchildren Mary Catherine Clark Anderson (Conrad), Will Gupton, and Robert Gupton; step-grandchildren, Landes and Waylon Outlaw, Ellie Throop, Rowe and Rex Cantella, Drew, Sam, Ben, Mark, Sophia, Nicholas, and Charles Putnam, and Maida Putnam Howell. In addition, Bill has many nephews, nieces, and extended family members.
Memorial contributions may be made to All Saints Episcopal School, Middle School Renovation Fund; 4108 Delaware Street, Beaumont, Texas 77706 or Trinity United Methodist Church Memorial Garden; 3430 Harrison Avenue, Beaumont, Texas 77706.
A gathering of Mr. Neild’s family and friends will be from 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m., Tuesday, September 6, 2022, at Broussard’s, 2000 McFaddin Avenue, Beaumont. His funeral service will be 11:00 a.m., Wednesday, September 7, 2022, at Trinity United Methodist Church, 3430 Harrison Avenue, Beaumont, with his interment to follow at Forest Lawn Memorial Park, Beaumont.
Gathering of Family and Friends
Broussard’s Mortuary McFaddin Ave.
- 2000, Mcfaddin Avenue, Beaumont, Texas, 77701,
- September 6, 2022
- 5:00 pm - 7:00 pm
Trinity United Methodist Church
- 3430, Harrison Ave, Beaumont, TX, 77706,
- September 7, 2022
- 11:00 am
Forest Lawn Memorial Park
- 4955, Pine St, Beaumont, TX, 77703,
- September 7, 2022