O'CALLAGHAN, Ben Lacy
Ben Lacy O'Callaghan, 94, passed away on May 13, 2021. He was born on August 20th, 1926 in Atlanta to William John O'Callaghan and Katherine Webb O'Callaghan. The youngest of five children, Ben graduated from Atlanta Boys High and served in the Army Air Corps in World War II before going on to receive his undergraduate degree in Electrical Engineering from Georgia Tech in 1950. That same year, he married the love of his life, Helen Knox of Atlanta, and they were blessed with sixty nine years together. Ben was a pioneer entrepreneur in the residential air conditioning field in Atlanta, in which he worked for over fifty five years. After getting his start in the 1950's at Dealers Supply Company, he founded the Ben O'Callaghan Company in 1961, which he later operated as O'Callaghan Services, Inc. with his eldest son, Chip. Over the course of his career in the HVAC business, Ben served on the Board of Directors of the Georgia Society of Professional Engineers and as Vice President of the Atlanta Chapter of the National Warm Air Heating & Air Conditioning Association. Ben was actively involved in the Atlanta community, where he served as Vice President of the Brookwood Hills Civic Association and the E. Rivers Elementary School PTA as well as on the Board of Directors of the Northside Kiwanis Club. A lifelong Republican, he played an active role in the development of a two-party system in Fulton County during the 1960s. A true optimist, Ben believed in reaching out to people with different views and backgrounds and finding common ground, which was evident when he served as Vice Chair for the Fulton County Board of Elections, where he worked in a bipartisan way to make voting and elections more accessible and secure for the community. A man of great faith, he was an active member of First Presbyterian Church in Midtown, where he was a Deacon. He was a founding member of The Cherokee Town Club, where he enjoyed playing tennis well into his late eighties. Ben was a lifelong and avid fan of Georgia Tech football and basketball and loved attending games with his children and grandchildren. Ben was a dedicated friend to all; he shared his passions and his faith with the world and was equally invested in the passions of others. He could make a friend wherever he went and was dedicated to reaching across perceived social boundaries to find the shared humanity in everyone he met. His passion and love for music will endure through future generations, as he continued to share it with his children and grandchildren throughout his life. Ben's faith was unrelenting, and compelled him to always look for the greater good in everything through all walks of life. Ben was preceded in death by his loving wife of sixty nine years, Helen Knox O'Callaghan, and son, Ben "Chip" O'Callaghan Jr. He is survived by his three children, Britton Knox O'Callaghan and his wife Leslie O'Callaghan, William John O'Callaghan and his wife Jennifer Olson, and Helen O'Callaghan Mulholland and her husband John "Sean" Mulholland; his ten grandchildren, Alexandra O'Callaghan, John Andrew O'Callaghan and his wife Leah O'Callaghan, Jacquelyn O'Callaghan Salzman and her husband Jesse Salzman, Britton Knox O'Callaghan Jr., Ben "Trey" O'Callaghan III, Abby O'Callaghan, John Mulholland III, Avery O'Callaghan, Ben Mulholland, William Mulholland; and his great grandson, Rivers Salzman. A graveside service will be held at Arlington Memorial Park at 11am on Wednesday, May 19th. In lieu of flowers, the family is requesting donations be made to the American Heart Association, Breast Cancer Research Foundation, and First Presbyterian Church of Atlanta.
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Funeral Home Information
H.M. Patterson & Son-Oglethorpe Hill Chapel
4550 Peachtree Road Ne
Credit: Jason Getz / Jason.Getz@ajc.com