Kathleen Alice McIntosh
Wolf Creek —Kathleen Alice McIntosh, 73, retired music educator and Great Falls Symphonic Choir director, died Friday, August 2nd in her home in Wolf Creek after a year-long battle with pancreatic cancer. Born October 16, 1939, in Duluth Minnesota, she was the only daughter of Vivian and Herbert McIntosh. They and a brother, Herb, preceded her in death. She received her education in Minnesota--a BA from MacPhail College of Music and later her MA from the
University of Minnesota, Duluth. In 1964, after teaching 3 years in Aurora, Minnesota, she moved to Great Falls to accept a teaching position at what was then West Junior High School. In 1986 Kathleen moved to CMR where she
developed a choral program that eventually doubled in size and was recognized for its excellence at District, State, and All-Northwest Festivals. She was honored professionally in 1992 when she received the Dufresne Outstanding
Educator award and in 1997 when she was a finalist for Montana Teacher of the Year.
During her 35-year tenure in the Great Falls Public Schools, she did much to instill in her students a love of singing and the pursuit of excellence. As head of the choral music department at CMR, she groomed her students' voices to contribute to a total sound, insisting that solo voices should not be heard in isolation.
Known by her students as "Miss Mac", she also gave them opportunities to explore musical theater. Her years at CMR were highlighted by holiday Madrigal dinners and full-scale musicals in collaboration with the school's drama and stagecraft departments. The polished performances of some of Broadway's most memorable musicals were a treat that Great Falls' audiences will long remember.
After her retirement from teaching in 2000, Kathleen continued her involvement in choral music as director of the Great Falls Symphonic Choir and her church
choir at Peace Lutheran Church. Not surprisingly, many of her former students, when they heard that "Miss Mac" was back on a podium, made their way into those organizations so they could continue to sing under her direction.
Having more free time in her retirement, Kathleen was able to pursue some of her other passions, including quilting. Her move to Wolf Creek in 2003 connected her with other kindred quilting spirits. and soon informal quilting bees and quilting retreats were part of her routine. As with her musical groups, the individual pieces in each quilt were carefully selected and came together in perfect harmony. During her final months, she continued to create and present her masterpieces to family and friends.
Kathleen is survived by a brother, Fred (Kathy) Redenbaugh of Great Falls, many nieces, nephews, grandnieces, and grandnephews in Great Falls, Minnesota, and Wisconsin. In addition she leaves her two faithful dogs, Fannie and Gracie, her long-time friend and roommate Peggy Rossberg, and literally thousands of students and adults who were privileged to be under the direction of "Miss Mac".
A memorial service will be held at Central Assembly of God, 2001 Central Avenue, Great Falls MT, Friday, August 23rd at 1:00pm.
Memorials are suggested to Wolf Creek Public School Piano Fund, American Cancer Society
, and a Hospice of your choice.
Published by Great Falls Tribune on Aug. 8, 2013.