John Drew McRae (August 22, 1960 - March 25, 2021) of Portland, Oregon, graduated from earth to heaven on Thursday, March 25, 2021 after a long illness. His beloved wife Tammy was by his side throughout.
John was born at Fort Bragg, North Carolina to Howard Amos McRae Jr and Jean Elizabeth McCulloch. He moved to Haines Alaska with his father, new stepmother Sarah, and siblings in 1975. The blended family of 8 developed a deep and abiding love for each other, each one celebrating the successes of others and standing shoulder-to-shoulder when the tough times came.
John retired from employment with the State of Alaska Department of Public Safety in Juneau, Alaska, after a career working with computer systems and moved to Oregon with his first wife Kathi and sons Jacob and Jeremiah. Although he left the state briefly after her untimely death in 2008, John found that he missed Oregon's beauty and returned, moving to Portland, where he was lucky enough to find love again with Tammy, who he met through church.
From an early age, John lived with the specter of Huntington's Disease, which took his mother's life. When he was diagnosed, he fully understood the challenges that lay ahead, but accepting them as part of God's plan, John did all he could through exercise and lifestyle to preserve his strength and mobility so he could be there for his boys and other loved ones.
John was a supremely loving husband and father. The word kind was invented to describe him. He walked through life lifting up the people around him, always ready with a gentle word or to listen. His life was sorely tested by all he endured, but he treated life's difficulties as chances to grow his faith and ability to comfort those around him.
Although COVID precautions prevent the family from holding a large funeral at this time, they intend to celebrate John's life together in Alaska on June 28. John's ashes will be interred at the family plot in Haines at that time.
John is survived by his mother Sarah Elizabeth McRae; wife Tammy, his two sons Jacob McRae and Jeremiah (Laney) McRae; his grandchildren, Jessee Davis and Jaspyr Diamond; brothers Thomas Howard McRae, Guy McCulloch (Joann) McRae, Michael E. (Julie) Helms, William Richard (Krista) Helms; sisters Barbara LaDawn Carr and Mary Frances (Scott) McRae; and many cousins, nieces, nephews, great nieces and great nephews.
John was predeceased by his mother Jean, father Howard, brother David, and first wife Kathi.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations to the Huntington's Disease Society of America.
Published in Juneau Empire from Apr. 25 to May 25, 2021.