John Arthur McKay of Raleigh, died Tuesday, Oct. 1 at Hospice of Wake County at the age of 77. Over the course of his life, John valued family, the challenges of ever-changing technology, writing, music, traveling and cooking for others.
John is survived by Susan, his loving wife of 24 years and four children, Justin and Philip McKay, both of California, Rob and Angela Eisenhardt of Wake Forest and Lisa and Jeff Bender of Norlina. His three grandchildren, Sophie, Eliza, and Jacob plus his numerous cousins, nieces, nephews, and friends will miss him.
He was born in Chicago Feb. 25, 1936 to Eugene R. and Florence Underwood McKay and was preceded in death by his brother, Gerald E. McKay, a fighter pilot killed in Vietnam.
After a childhood spent on the family farm raising 4H pigs and sheep for the county fair, John majored in chemistry at Southern Illinois University. He served in the U.S. Navy before marrying. He then worked as a senior programmer for IBM. John particularly enjoyed when IBM sent him to work in Brussels, Belgium for four years.
John married Susan in 1989 and then set about fulfilling another dream: opening a bed and breakfast. His time serving as the innkeeper at the Hearthside Inn in Louisburg was perhaps the happiest time of his life.
Pastor David Gira will conduct a celebration of life service Friday, Oct. 11, 2:30 p.m. in the chapel of Wake Forest United Methodist Church, 905 S Main St. A brief reception will follow the service. In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations to Hospice of Wake County, 250 Hospice Circle, Raleigh, NC, 27607, or to the Building Fund of Wakefield United Methodist Church, 14460 New Falls of Neuse Rd, Ste 149-274, Raleigh, NC 27614.