Cover photo for Neena N. Haddad's Obituary
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Neena N. Haddad

May 14, 1939 — July 9, 2022

Neena N. Haddad

Well done, good and faithful servant. Neena was called home by her Lord and Savior on July 9, 2022. Neena was born in Jdeidit Merjanoun, Lebanon on May 14, 1939 to Archpriest Neyemtallah Shadid, Economos and Khjouriah Hafeeza Horaney Shadid. Neena was the youngest of five children; three brothers, Morris, Philip, and Jimmy and one sister, Velma. During that time, Neena's father was ordained in the Antiochian Orthodox Church as a Very Reverend. In 1946 the Lord called Neyemtallah to serve with Him in heaven. In 1948, the family moved back to Oklahoma City. Neena arrived at the shores of New York City via Ellis Island and for a young girl of nearly 10 years of age was awestruck with the teeming city. She enrolled in the third grade at Eugene Field Elementary School. Neena was excited about being in a new country but as she spoke only Arabic, she was intimidated and fearful. However, she did not cower and was determined to learn the English language. She studied diligently and was then and continued to be through her life, an over-achiever. She quickly became fluent in English and later would become a Junior High School Honors Grammar/English teacher. In 1958, she graduated from Northwest Classen as a member of the Honor Society. Her education continued at Oklahoma City University where she was a full-time student working toward a degree in Education. She also worked at Street's Department Store as their secretary to pay for the cost of her tuition. Neena graduated from Oklahoma City University in 1962 with a degree in Education. In 1961, she met the love of her life, Phillip (Phil) Haddad at the funeral of Neena's brother-in-law. Phillip was living in Coweta, Oklahoma, and they developed a long-distance courtship which resulted in marriage. They wed on July 29,1962 in Oklahoma City. The couple resided in Coweta where Phil was in school administration and Neena secured a job with Coweta schools as an English teacher. One year later, their first son, Phillip Anthony (Tony) was born on June 23, 1963, and on September 24, 1964, their second son, Jeffery James was born. In 1972, the family moved to Oklahoma City where Neena continued her teaching career, teaching 7th and 8th grade Honors English at Hefner Middle School in the Putnam City Public School District. She was a dedicated and determined teacher. So many of her former students from both Coweta and Hefner stayed in contact with her and often have told her how much they learned while in her class. After 30 years of teaching, Neena retired in 1991. Phil also retired that year. The couple began a five year stint with the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) where they traveled the state conducting national testing in various school districts. The testing of fourth, eighth and twelfth grade students was assimilated in the Nation's Report Card which provides important information about student achievement and learning experiences in various subjects. After five years with NAEP, Phillip and Neena decided it was time to enjoy retirement and a growing family of grandchildren and later great-grandchildren. During those retirement years, they did some traveling which included a cruise around Alaska and the Canadian western coast. They also enjoyed trips to Remington Park to watch the horse races and pull a few arms of the slot machines at various casinos. It was a fun diversion for them and more of a social outing as Neena's brother and wife joined them. Neena was a devout and loving member of St. Elijah Antiochian Orthodox Christian Church. She was a devout servant of God. Both she and Phil looked forward to and never missed worship services. They willingly lent their time and energy to St. Elijah Antiochian Orthodox Christian Church. Their support and participation in various church committees and activities was always evident. Both relished their volunteer efforts as a way to serve the Church they dearly loved. One example was the annual St. Elijah Bake Sale where they did everything from cooking, seating and serving guests, clearing tables, etc. Their bright and cheerful faces were always a welcoming sight. Neena was awarded Vacation Bible School Director Emeritus in 2019 to recognize her over thirty years of service to the program. She was also a valued member on the St. Elijah's Mother's Day Out Board. ' Neena relished her time with her family. It would be hard to imagine a more nurturing and caring mother. She was always there for her two children. She was their crutch during difficult times and their biggest encourager. She brought an endless supply of energy as she tackled each role in her life: mother, wife, daughter, sister, teacher, nurse, cheerleader, counselor, and Sitty. Neena used some of that energy to "go, go, go!" She was also an avid runner, entering many races. Her pile of medals and awards is testament to her passion and will of determination to succeed in anything she did. She was indeed an inspiration. Sunday lunches were a special time. Neena would cook an incredible spread of traditional Lebanese and American dishes. Her boys and their families would gather every week to make countless memories. These meals were a treasured time, and nothing made Neena happier than to be surrounded by family. Her home was full of love and laughter on the 4th of July and Christmas holidays when they hosted all her siblings and their families. Neena was the bond and glue that held everything. The world became a better place when the Lord graced us with Neena's presence here on Earth. Her time was all too brief and she touched so many lives. Her legacy of love, compassion and spirit live on in everyone who was fortunate enough to know her. She had a genuine warmth and tenacity that could not be matched. She will be missed more than can be imagined. We can take comfort in knowing that in Heaven, she is eternal. WE LOVE YOU MORE. Neena is survived by son, Dr. Tony and wife Heather Haddad, son, Jeff, four grandchildren, seven great grandchildren, and a host of nephews and nieces.Trisagion Service for Neena will be Thursday, July 14th at 10:00 a.m. followed by the Funeral Service at 10:30 a.m. at St. Elijah Orthodox Christian Church. Burial will follow at Rose Hill Burial Park. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to The Flowers That Do Not Wither Fund at St. Elijah.
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Past Services

Funeral

Thursday, July 14, 2022

St. Elijah Antiochian Orthodox Church

15000 North May Avenue, Oklahoma City, OK 73134

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