After 31 years of service to the members of Mississippi County Electric Cooperative, Pat O’Neal is retiring.

After 31 years of service to the members of Mississippi County Electric Cooperative, Pat O’Neal is retiring.

July 16, 2009

Pat O'Neal image

A drop-in reception for Pat is being held in her honor on Thursday, August 27th from 5 p.m. until 7 p.m. at the Holiday Inn in Blytheville. Please come by and visit with Pat, wish her well and enjoy the evening. Pat came to work for the cooperative in May 1978. Prior to coming to work for the cooperative Pat worked for Southwestern Bell as a Telephone Operator and Service Representative and then USDA in the Cotton Classing Office. She began her career at the cooperative as a cashier enjoying helping the members.

Within a year she was moved to Billing where she developed a close bond with the farmers through their irrigation accounts and the new industries that soon needed special billing. Pat was promoted to Office Manager and then Manager of Office and Member Services. She will retire from Mississippi County Electric Cooperative as Senior Vice President of Cooperative Services.

Larry Hellums, President/CEO of the cooperative had this to say about Pat.... “From the day I first arrived here at MCEC in 1996, it was obvious to me that when I needed to rely on someone, Pat O’Neal was that one. That trust has only grown since then. She had a coop radio and phone in her house. If trouble came up or questions were asked, day or night, Pat was there with whatever needed to be done. From her view the job was never done, taking care of the coop and our members never ends. I don’t know where she started, but I do know she is finishing up as the number two person here at the coop as Senior Vice President of Cooperative Services, which just about covers everything that goes on here.


Pat will be missed here at MCEC every day. People will still call and ask for her. I know I will wonder, did this or that, get done. Pat will leave, but will leave a lot! Throughout the years she has given her all, and yet, has given more; that will stay and that is how everyone who remains behind will have the work ethic that Pat has always lead the way on. When one person leads the way, the rest will follow and in doing that; we have all learned “her way”. I believe that everyone who works here, and that includes all the men who work on the lines, as well as the office staff, have learned and will continue to do the work like Pat always showed them; that the work never ends.”

“I will enjoy taking it easy after retirement, but it will be hard to leave Mississippi County Electric and the wonderful employees and members we serve. They each hold a special place in my heart” Pat said.

Clyde, Pat’s husband of 42 years has been retired for several years. For most of their years together, the couple could be found farming or tending to their yard and garden. The O’Neals have two sons Shawn and Kevin, both of Blytheville.

Shawn and his wife Shannon are the parents of Alan, Aaron and Abby. Kevin and his wife Dawn are the parents of Jack and Sam.

Pat is looking forward to spending more time with her family and her five grandchildren and hopes to take up fishing again, something she and her husband used to do on a regular basis early in their married life.

The employees and directors of Mississippi County Electric Cooperative congratulate Pat on her well-deserved retirement and thank her for her dedication to the members of the cooperative.

Pryor, Lincoln, Berry Announce FEMA Funds for Northeast Arkansas

June 22, 2009

Washington – U.S. Senators Mark Pryor and Blanche Lincoln and U.S. Representative Marion Berry (AR-01) today announced that Northeast Arkansas will receive federal funding from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). The funds will be used to help with repairs and clean-up from the January ice storm and are allocated as follows:

City of Blytheville, $2,050,289
Clay County Electric Cooperative Corporation, $21,727,435
North Arkansas Electric Cooperative, Inc., $5,300,446
Paragould Light and Water Commission, $2,255,874
Mississippi County Electric Cooperative, $5,824,913
Craighead Electric Cooperative Corporation, $13,598,307

“January’s ice storm caused significant damage to the northern half of our state,” Lincoln said. “In the days after the storm, our first responders and community members answered the call by assisting in the recovery response. I am pleased that the federal government is doing its part to help with recovery efforts in Northeast Arkansas.” 

“Cleaning up the damage and debris required considerable time and manpower,” Pryor said. “I’m pleased FEMA came through with more federal resources to help offset the costs these counties incurred.”

“The January ice storm left Arkansas with severe damage across the entire state,” said Berry. “This funding will provide local officials the resources they need to recover from this natural disaster and rebuild their communities.”

Page Features: