Cover photo for Dessie Marie Hagans Mcneil's Obituary
Dessie Marie Hagans Mcneil Profile Photo
1942 Dessie 2022

Dessie Marie Hagans Mcneil

August 28, 1942 — May 21, 2022

A Life well Lived
I am Free
Don't grieve for me, for now I'm free. I'm following the path God has laid for me. I took His hand when I heard him call.
I turned my back and left it all.
I could not stay another day
To laugh, to love, to work, or play. Tasks left undone must stay that way. I've found that peace at the close of the day.
If my parting has left a void, Then fill it with remembered joy. A friendship shared, a laugh, a kiss, Ah yes, these things I too will miss.
Be not burdened with times of sorrow.
I wish for you the sunshine of tomorrow. My life's been full, I savored much,
Good friends, good times, a loved one's touch.
Perhaps my time seemed all too brief Don't lengthen it now with undue grief. Lift up your heart rejoice with me. God wanted me now; He set me free.
Anne Lindgren Davison

Mrs. Dessie Marie McNeil was born Dessie Marie Hagans on August 28th 1942 to the late Ammie Edward Hagans and Blonnie Williams Hagans on August 28, 1942, in Wayne County, NC. She departed this life on May 21, 2022, at the age of 79.
Dessie graduated from William M. Cooper High School in 1963, and moved to Brooklyn, NY, shortly after. While residing in New York, Dessie worked various jobs but soon thrived in the food industry. She met and married Willie Lee McNeil Sr. From this union, two children were born, Lisa Daphine Pridgen and Willie Lee McNeil Jr. After 19 years in New York, Dessie returned home and settled with her children in Selma, NC.
During her time in North Carolina, Dessie worked as a cook within the food industry until her retirement. She cherished her family, loved daily talks with her children, and doted on her grandchildren. Dessie also rejoined Wesley Chapel A.M.E. Church, where she enjoyed worshiping the Lord with her sister, Sallie Smith.
A whiz in the kitchen, Dessie was renowned for her home-cooked meals that were made with love and warmed the soul. A few of her famous dishes were her veal parmesan, macaroni and cheese, and candied yams. In addition to her savory dishes, Dessie had a memory that was endless. She could fill a conversation with historical encounters. Everyone loved hearing her stories and obtaining wise counsel. You may not have liked the advice that you received but knew that it came from a loving place.
She is preceded in death by her parents and husband; along with her siblings, Albert Hagans, Lettie Belle Richardson, Edward Earl Hagans, Daisy White, and Kenneth Hagans; a sister-in-law, Rosa Hagans; a brother-in-law Isaiah Smith; and a special niece, Janet Hagans.
Dessie leaves to cherish her memory: her daughter, Lisa Daphine Pridgen of Four Oaks, NC; her son, Willie Lee (Cynthia) McNeil Jr. of Charlotte, NC; eight grandchildren, Shawn (Kristin) Pridgen, Daulton McNeil, DaMica' Pridgen, Dasmin McNeil, Devin McNeil, Brittanie (Anthony) Moore, Candace (Rico) Thompson, and Aleah Davis; three great- grandchildren, Brianna, Brison, and A'mare, and two additional great-grandchildren soon on the way; a sister, Sallie Smith of Clayton, NC; a brother-in-law, Jimmie White of Clayton, NC; a sister-in-law, Jean Hagans of Smithfield, NC; and a host of nieces, nephews, family, and friends.
Thursday, May 26
1:00 PM to 6:00 PM
Sanders Funeral Home Chapel
806 E Market St
Smithfield, NC 27577
(919) 934-8416

Graveside Service:
Friday, May 27
11:00 AM
Price Cemetery
Selma, NC
To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Dessie Marie Hagans Mcneil, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services


Thursday, May 26, 2022

1:00 - 6:00 pm (Eastern time)

Sanders Funeral Home Chapel

806 E Market St, Smithfield, NC 27577

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.

Graveside Service

Friday, May 27, 2022

Starts at 11:00 am (Eastern time)

Price Cemetery


Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.


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