Former Sitka and Hoonah resident Francis J. "Mac" Mackin died Sept. 14, 2009, in Spokane, Wash. He was 87.
He was born Sept. 10, 1922, in Red Deer, Alberta, Canada, and grew up in Dalton Gardens, Idaho, and Spokane, Wash. He joined the U.S. Navy in World War II and served in the Submarine Service in the Pacific during the war.
After the war ended in 1945 and while still in the Navy, he met the love of his life, Vivian. They were married on his birthday. They had just celebrated their 64th wedding anniversary.
He was a plumber and pipe-fitter by trade and worked on several major constructions in the area including Sacred Heart Medical Center, Grand Coulee Dam's third power house and several missal sites during the 1960s Cold War.
He was an active member of the Plumber/Pipe Fitters Union, Local 44 for 70 years and served for many years as business agent there, working diligently to settle disputes and improve working conditions for members. He had a passion for living life on his terms.
He loved fishing, golfing with his kids, Gonzaga Basketball and traveling the world. After years of much study and preparation, he was ordained as a deacon in the Catholic church. He was a deacon for 25 years. He spent much of his retirement years serving as a deacon at St. Aloysius Catholic Church in Spokane and also in the Diocese of Juneau Alaska, where they lived for 10 years, at St. Gregory's in Sitka and Sacred Heart in Hoonah.
He performed many baptisms and marriages, including those of his own grandchildren.
"His spirituality was not theological in nature, but more of a simple earthy type that many could relate to," his family wrote. "He was loved abundantly and will be greatly missed."
He is survived by his wife of 64 years, Vivian; children, Joe Mackin and wife, Bonnie, of Pearland, Texas, Ray Mackin and wife, Marisa, of Spokane, Stan Mackin and wife, Carolyn, of Auburn, Wash., Patricia Mackin, of Spokane, Debra McCall and husband, Mac, of San Antonio, Texas, Janet Charlton and husband, Mark, Mark Mackin and wife, Patti, and Shawn Mackin and wife, Esmeralda, all of Spokane; 22 grandchildren and 19 great-grandchildren; and siblings, Harold, Jim and Mike Mackin, and Helen Zeis and Rosellen St. Dennis.
He was preceded in death by Mary Knox, Lawrence Mackin and Lorreta Smith.
Mass of Christian burial will be held at 7 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 19, at St. Aloysius Catholic Church, with Interment to follow at Holy Cross Cemetery.
The family would like to thank Mac and Vivian's many caregivers throughout the years. Please visit Mac's memorial and leave a condolence at www.hennesseyfuneralhomes.com. Arrangements entrusted to Hennessey Smith Funeral Homes.