John McDonald died peacefully in his sleep on Feb. 7, 2011, in Petersburg with his daughters by his side.
He was born July 24, 1934 in Seattle. As a young man, John worked for Great Northern Railroad, then moved on to logging Redwoods in California. After years of logging, he moved his family to Oregon, where he started commercial fishing. This eventually drew him and his family to Alaska in the mid-1970s. He continued to commercial fish and work maintenance on many of the buildings downtown until the early 1990s, when he semi-retired and started doing all the things he really enjoyed. His family wrote “smoking and canning salmon, making jerky and drinking beer with all his buddies were some of his favorite pastimes.”
John continued to go sport fishing, crabbing and clamming every chance he got. June was always his favorite time of year, when he would go to Yakutat with his friends George, Harvey, Del and Robbie to go fishing. His family wrote “fishing was always his love.”
John was an active member of the Elks, Eagles and Moose lodges for many years. He enjoyed bringing in smoked fish or jerky for everyone to snack on.
John was preceded in death by his mother Rosebud Barry; father Paul Lopez; aunts Doris and Bonnie and daughter Rita McDonald.
He is survived by his sister Kathleen (Chet) Ross of Colorado; brother Charles (Ester) McDonald of California; sister Cristeena Lopez of Idaho; brother Murphy Lopez, daughter Sheryl (Ross) Pasquan; son John (Carla) McDonald Jr.; daughter Susan White of Arizona; son Robert McDonald of California; grandchildren Erika and Christina Judson of Juneau and John III and Dillon of Mabank, Texas and many more grandchildren, nieces, nephews and cousins.
A celebration of life will take place at 2 p.m. on April 2 at the Juneau Moose Family Center. Please join us with your favorite stories and memories.