Bill Mackey
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BILL MACKEY. After a valiant battle with Alzheimer's Disease and laryngeal cancer, Bill Mackey died at home, surrounded by family and dear friends, including his devoted dog Judy and cat Porky. William Sturges Mackey, Jr. was born on May 27, 1921 in St. Louis, MO and became a Houston native five years later. He was married to Margaret Powell Mackey for almost forty years, and after her death married Barbara Drozdowski in 1988. Bill had a distinguished business career, but considered himself, first and foremost a teacher. After graduating from the Rice Institute in 1943, he entered the U.S. Army Air Corp, and upon returning from his service duty he returned to the Rice University as an Accounting Professor, where he remained for 16 years. In 1998 he was awarded the Distinguished Alumni Award in recognition of his teaching excellence and business acumen. He ended his business career in 1984, as Chairman and CEO of the Lifemark Corporation. Bill played as hard as he worked and traveled throughout the world with his wife Barbara, and across the United States, primarily to race tracks where he watched, for many years, his own horses compete, as well as for his love of handicapping, which he learned from his father. He was a man of tremendous personal courage, integrity and strength, yet, also a gentle man with a love and respect for all life. He and Barbara founded the Bill and Barbara Mackey Foundation for Animal Welfare, which provides funds for domestic animals, and retired thoroughbred horses. Bill is preceded in death by his parents, Bill, Sr. and, Dorothy Allison Mackey, and his first wife Margaret Powell Mackey. In addition to his wife Barbara, he is survived by his daughter, Dorothy Mackey Lurie, of Houston and her sons, Andrew Powell and William; sons, John Powell Mackey and wife Deborah Morin and James Wescott Mackey, of Austin. He also leaves a brother George and wife Alice, of Cambridge, MA and sister Madge of Bellaire, TX. The family wishes to express their deepest gratitude to the Hospice of Houston for their superb loving care during Bill's last days. A special thank you also goes to Drs. Clifford Dacso and Eugene Lai, of Baylor College of Medicine for their never ending care and support. A memorial service will be held at 11 a.m. on Tuesday, November 16, 2004 at the First Unitarian Church, 5200 Fannin Street, with Rev. Gail Lindsey Marriner officiating. A reception will immediately follow at the Jones School of Business on the Rice University Campus. In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations to the Barbara and Bill Mackey Foundation managed by the Greater Houston Community Foundation, 4550 Post Oak Place, Houston, TX 77027 or the charity of your choice.

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Published in Houston Chronicle from Nov. 14 to Nov. 15, 2004.
Memories & Condolences
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13 entries
December 14, 2004
Mrs. Mackey, thank you for posting these notes for us all.

Bill Mackey was an innovator and leader, and had an incredible ability to focus. As many of you have said in this guest book, the LifeMark days were special and lead by a special man.

I got lucky one year and blew out my profit numbers an won a manager of the year award. I was pretty nervous going up to receive the award and Mr. Mackey said, “Are you sure you are old enough to hold your position?” He not only was a great businessman, he made us laugh (That is of course if you hit your numbers!). I am glad he was around as long as he was to touch so many lives.

Best wishes to all of the family and I am sorry for your loss.
Michael Boroch
December 11, 2004
Dear Barbara,
Mike called me to tell me about Bill's passing, and I want you to know I'm thinking of you at this sad time. He was a great man who made amazing contributions to so many industries. He was blessed to be in such loving hands with you at his side. Hugs to you and your family, Love, Carla
Carla Pearman,M.D.
December 10, 2004
I had the good fortune to have Bill Mackey as my accounting professor at Rice in the early 50s, and he was by far my favorite. He was full of enthusiasm and completely dedicated to teaching us as much as possible in the time alloted,and then some. For example, in our senior year income tax class he told us that there was no possibility of covering the material in the two classroom hours assigned the course. He told us he would be willing to come in every Monday evening from 7:00pm until library closing time if we wanted to do justice to the course. All nine of us agreed and showed up every Monday night. Thanks Bill! I didn't have any other professors who were as generous with their time.
Roger Bonney
November 29, 2004
Barbara -- just heard on Thanksgiving Day about Bill's death. My sincerest condolences to you and the Mackey family.
Stuart Smith
November 17, 2004
Dear Barbara,

I just learned of Bill's passing. Please accept the personal condolences and best wishes from my family at this time of loss.

It was my high honor to serve Bill Mackey for a decade. He led Lifemark with an exceptional vision and passion . We had a clear mission. Outstanding performance was a requirement to be on Bill's team. Still, as we pursued the contest's goals, there was great fun and a commitment to family values.

We all go forward, but I treasure the comrades, the wins, and contribution that Bill directed. He was a great friend, a teacher and a leader.

My Regards,

Harris "Buddy" W. Miers Jr.
Buddy Miers
November 16, 2004
Barb--I heard about Bill's memorial too late to attend. So many wonderful memories of Bill and Lifemark. I will always remember Bill as a man of decision and strength. We've lost a great one.

With sympathy,

Dick McWilliams
Dick McWilliams
November 16, 2004
Mr. Mackey certainly did create a lot of memories for us at Lifemark. To this day, I think back on them often. I am thankful for having 10 wonderful years of working there. The people that worked there were a very close group of people, and mixed well together. My thoughts and prayers are with his family.
Jonelle (Jo) Ingebretson
November 15, 2004
I was Bill's Executive Secretary from 1976 thru 1978 and thoroughly enjoyed working for him and with him. I learned many things and will never forget him. He was a wonderful man and I admired and respected him very much. He will be greatly missed.
Cherie Partain
November 15, 2004
I was on the initial staff of Chocolate Bayou facility and remember interviewing for the marketing position with Mr. Mackey. He was so kind and I knew from the beginning I wanted to work with his company. Just days after I was offered the position I was diagnosed with cancer. I called to say I could not take the position with Lifemark, but was told they would hold the position for me. I just could not believe that kind of compassion in the business world. I'm still here today and will always remember the kindness I was shown. Mr. Mackey has surely left his mark on this world and we are better for having had him pass our way.

With my fondest regards,
Donna Broussard
November 15, 2004
It sounds like he was an amazing man. My thoughts and prayers are with your family. Love, Nicole Roberts
Nicole Roberts
November 15, 2004
My sincerest condolences to the entire Mackey family. I will be forever grateful to Bill for allowing me to care for one of his best horses, Clever Song, for so many years, and to Barbara for finding Clever a wonderful home when we left Houston. My association with Bill through racing afforded me one of the great rewards of my life.
Steve Roman
November 14, 2004
What wonderful memories he created for so many people. I am greatly indebted to Bill for an education beyond that available in a school room. We worked hard, had a lot of fun and accomplished much at Lifemark. I shall always cherish his memory.
Bobbie Lesser
November 14, 2004
Only knowing Mr. Mackey for a short period of time, he was a joy to be around. Even though he was ill for a long time he always managed to maintain his sense of humor. I will miss him. May God bless his family!
Deborah Tate
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