Late last week, the University of Maryland learned of the passing of Terrapin wrestling great and football player John “Paul” McNeil, Sr. A native of Wilkes-Barre, Pa., McNeil was inducted into the Maryland Sports Hall of Fame in 2005.
McNeil, who graduated in 1941, attended Maryland on a football scholarship, but was inducted into the Maryland Sports Hall of Fame for his exploits on the mat. In three seasons with the wrestling team, McNeil was never beaten going undefeated in 41 matches.
Upon graduation, McNeil entered the United States Army, but soon joined the U.S. Marines. From 1943 until the end of World War II, he served with the 2nd Marine Division in the Pacific. McNeil also served in the Korean War and Vietnam War earning numerous citations along with way.
McNeil retired from the U.S. Marines in 1969 and settled in Florida with his wife Virginia. He passed away on July 4 in High Point, N.C.
Maryland athletics extends its condolences to the McNeil family along with its thoughts and prayers.