Jacqueline Charlotte (Dirac) Nichele was born in St. Maurice, Valais, Switzerland to Albert and Angèle Tissières Dirac on November 28, 1945.
She is survived by her loving brothers Jean-Michel Dirac and Georges-Albert Dirac and their amazing families; her devoted daughter Aleka Janine Marie O’Neil, faithful son-in-law Timothy Mark O’Neil and adoring grandchildren Daly Nichele O’Neil (9) and Roic Castilla O’Neil (6); and diverse circle of affectionate friends.
She was an open-minded, inquisitive thinker, a charismatic host and entertainer and a talented and accomplished hair stylist. It is difficult to hear Jackie’s name without a rush of warmth and happy memories. Her laughter was joyful and contagious. She was proud of her family, near and far, but also independent. Her giant personality was a gift, her kind heart a treasure.
Jackie passed with grace and dignity, comforted by Hospice of the Valley and in the presence of family, on February 18, 2021. She was brave and beautiful. A formal memorial and burial will be held in St. Maurice on March 6, 2021. An informal celebration will be held in late March in Phoenix. Please contact Aleka O’Neil for details (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Kindly share a comment or memory below, that we might have a record of ‘gathering in spirit’ during this time of transition.
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Posey Moore Nash
Our deepest condolences on the loss of your dear Mother.
What a beautiful treasure she was. I see so much of her in you Aleka. My heart and my prayers are with you all.
Our condolences. I remember travelling with her and what a delight it was, she was adventerous and had such an exciting spirit.
Nancy and Hank Markiewicz
Dear Aleka, Tim and kids,
Our sincere sympathy to you and your family. We hope your fondest memories of her are somewhat helpful at this difficult time. She was a terrific friend, stylist and person.
I/we have known your mother since 1976-77. Years ago, I first met her on one of our many motorcycle trips around the state several times a year. She became my stylist years later. Jackie was always optimistic, helpful, friendly and had a great sense of humor.
Best wishes and hugs, be well and stay safe, Hank and Nancy
Jackie was my hair stylist for over twenty years, and I loved her as a friend as well. I looked forward to our fun and lively conversations every month. She was a great and honest confidante and probably knew more of my private life than anyone else. I will miss her greatly and my heart goes out to her dear daughter, Alexa, son-in-law, grandchildren, and the rest of her family and friends. God bless.
Jacque was my hairstylist for over 35 years, but she was also a good friend. I was so saddened to hear of her passing as it was so sudden. I have so many fond memories of her. She helped with a fashion show for at risk teens. She was a generous and kind person. I will miss her.
Aleka, Tim & family, we are so sad for your loss of your Mother and Grandmother. She held a very special place in our hearts. I was so touched by your closeness and wonderful walks you took together. We are with you during these times and forever. Love, Howard & Christine
Ma tante, je t’aime. Jamais je ne t’oublierai.
Je suis de tout coeur avec toi cousine Aleka et ta famille.
Je garde en moi les souvenirs de tes séjours en Suisse ainsi que ma venue aux USA. J’y ai passé de merveilleux moments chez toi, avec toi. Tu m’as fait découvrir ta vie américaine.
Love Love Love la famille.
Peut-être loin au niveau de la distance, mais si proche du cœur! Nous pensons très fort à Jacqueline et nous t’envoyons toutes nos pensées! Merci pour tout ce que tu as fait. Nous t’aimons.
Albertine Dirac et famille
I fell in love with Jackie the moment I met her! As I too am a stylist, we work together at a salon in Scottsdale and begin our friendship that would last through our retirement. She worked with me when I open my own salon and was an exemplary stylist, Friend, work buddy! The comments that would come out of her mouth would create a roar of laughter… I can still hear her Swiss accent even now as I type this…One particular day a client of hers had been away on a summer holiday and had had her perm done elsewhere, she came in complaining about what a terrible experience it was, and Jackie gently put her hands on her shoulders from behind the chair, and looking at her client replied’ ‘well at least your not ugly!’ With that the Client knew The Swiss Miss ( as I affectionately named her) was going to make it all right again… what a Joy she was! Another instance we double dated two rather elderly men, and had a lovely evening, as I was taking her home, her only comment was’ at first I wish they were younger… then I say to my self’ I wish WE were Younger..’ and we laughed til we cried! She will be missed amongst us, however; She will be Present in our Hearts Memory!….Thank you Jackie/SwissMiss for being in my life.
Fondly, Ms Roxie
My deepest condolences to her daughter and son-in-law and to her two grandchildren …she would always share a story with me about how lovely they are when she came to buy flowers, or meeting by coincidence in a local store. My deepest Sympathy Aleka
I will miss my dear friend and wonderful hairstylist. I’m still in shock after her swift passing. We did a lot of laughing together. I received many compliments on my hair because of her skillful styling. My love to all.
She will live in my heart forever !!! The moments I was able to spend near her were always fun, she was a super woman, a loving mother, a fun grandmother and an extraordinary being of light !! I am fortunate to have shared difficult moments with her and to see her smile and fight like a hero !!!
I love you very much O’Neal family ❤️
Jackie was my stylist for over thirty years and I will never forget her or her dry sense of humor. I recall one of my friends who had lost his wife the previous year after many years of marriage and was interested in a “new look”. I referred him to Jackie and not only was he incredibly pleased with the haircut she provided, he was very attracted to her. He was about fifteen years older but determined to win her affection. Jackie, however, somehow managed to let him down with dignity and maintain him as a client. When he became involved in a new relationship, Jackie became his girlfriend’s stylist as well. I asked him if it was awkward considering the way he pursued Jackie romantically, he said he and his girlfriend would rather feel awkward than look awkward with substandard haircuts from “hit and run” haircutters. I agreed with him and Jackie cut his hair until the time of his death. May you rest in God’s presence my precious friend. Kathryn Smith
Difficile de vivre cette tristesse partagée si loin les uns des autres. J’aimerais être près de toi Aleka pour te prendre dans mes bras et te dire combien nous t’aimons et combien Jacqueline était une magnifique personne, une tante si charismatique.
Nous pensons fort à toi, à vous quatre.
Clémence et famille
Kay Martens & Phil Cram
Jackie was a friend and stylist for my husband and me for almost 30 years, plenty of time for us all to become good friends. We loved talking recipes and cooking and good food and party plans. We knew she would appreciate it as we did so we always included a bottle of a good French red wine with her Christmas gift. She helped us with recipes and once she and Aleka joined us for a Ballet AZ performance. She was a special person, always fun and especially thoughtful. We will miss her terribly.
Our condolences to you all Aleka, Tim, and her grandchildren whom she loved. And I know the dog and the turtle must miss her as she certainly cared for them.
Aleka and Tim, my thoughts and prayers are with your family during this time. Look forward to seeing you soon.
Mary Ann O’Neil
Jim and I are startled by losing Jacque so quickly or at all for that matter. She has always been such a happy part of our lives. Very much a part of our family. Warm and kind from the minute we first met her. Our family gatherings were always more fun when Jacque was there. You could see a bit of mischief in her twinkling big black eyes. We will miss her so. We are so proud of you Aleka, and your strength, faithfulness, and love in wrapping your heart around your Mom during this difficult time. Praying for blessings on her and on all of you as well. Love, Mamo and PopPop
Dear Aleka and Family,
My deepest sympathy. I am so saddened to know of Jacque’s passing. We lived on the same street and had fun times together. She was the best hairstylist and always cheerful. I will always think of her with gratitude.
Mary Ann O’Neil
Jim and I are startled by losing Jacque so quickly, or, at all. She has always been such a happy part of our lives. Very much a part of our family. Warm and kind from the minute we met her. Our family gatherings were always more fun when Jacque was there. You could see a bit of mischief in her twinkling big black eyes. We will miss her so. We are so proud of you Aleka and your strength, faithfulness and love in wrapping your heart around your Mom during this difficult time. Praying for blessings on her and on all of you. Love, Mamo and PopPop
Oh Aleka, I am so sad to hear of the passing of your mom. You know we have such wonderful memories of life back on Rose Circle Drive that I will cherish always. For such a tiny person, she was definitely larger than life and always full of spunk! I will remember her always that way. My thoughts and prayers are with you.