John Patrick McKelvey, 88, died at his home on Friday evening, Dec. 14, 2012. He had been active until the hour of his death. He was known as Mac or Jack and was born in Detroit on Dec. 27, 1923.
He served in the Army
Corps of Engineers during World War II
from March 31, 1941 to March 30, 1946. At that time he had been the youngest sargeant major in the Army. During his service he received a Bronze Star
. He then worked at The Dow Chemical Co. in the distribution and traffic department. While with Dow he worked for six years in Newport News, Va. He returned to Midland until his retirement. He then volunteered in the early days of the 1016 Home. He also went to Rutgers University to become a counselor at the 1016 Home.
Mac was Santa Claus at the Midland Santa House after studying at the Santa School in Philadelphia, Pa. He volunteered with United Way and Senior Services. At SVSU, Mac was on the early boards for Oscar Life Long Institute (OLLI). In Alabama he volunteered at Bon Secour National Wildlife Refuge. He enjoyed volunteering while being a desert rat at Chaco Culture National Historic Park in New Mexico.
In 2005, after his wife Pat died, he was very active in the inception of the Toni & Trish House for the Care of the Terminally Ill. His father died when he was young and therefore understood the intent for the Toni & Trish House to start a second program for children's grief.
His mother Rose (Costello) McKelvey and father John Henry McKelvey preceded him in death. His father died when he was eight years old in an accident at Dow, while serving as a fireman
. His wife, Patricia Ann English McKelvey, died after they had been married 55 years. He is survived by his daughter, Ann Marie of Santa Fe, N.M.; sons, James Patrick and his wife Jan of Hillsborough, N.C., and John Stuart of Midland and his wife Deirdre Crean. Also five grandsons, Joshua John, Benjamin James, Michael David, and Charles Edward McKelvey of Hillsborough, N.C., and McKelvey Dryden of Santa Fe, N.M. As well as a dear friend, Dolly Furland. He was preceded in death by one grandson.
In lieu of flowers the family requests donations be sent to Toni & Trish House, PO Box 125, Auburn, MI, 48640.
On Thursday, Dec. 20, 2012, a gathering is planned at Ware-Smith-Woolever Funeral Home, 1200 W. Wheeler St., Midland, from 5-7 p.m., with a silent meditation from 7-7:30 p.m. On Friday, Dec. 21, please join us for a memorial service at 11 a.m. on the Winter Solstice at the Presbyterian Church at 3010 Ashman St., Midland. The Rev. Wallace Mayton III is officiating.
Cremation arrangements have been entrusted to the care of the Ware-Smith-Woolever Funeral Directors.