William A. Mackey
Captain William Alexander Mackey, Sr., age 86, of Tuscaloosa, passed away peacefully on May 4, 2010, at Hospice of West Alabama after a long and courageous battle with cancer. Graveside services will be 2 p.m. Friday, May 7, 2010, at Tuscaloosa Memorial Park with Dr. Charlie Durham officiating and Tuscaloosa Memorial Chapel Funeral Home directing. Visitation will be one hour prior to services at the funeral home.
He was preceded in death by his first wife of 50 years, Warren Jemison Mackey; his brother, Parker Mackey, Jr. and wife Betty Gilbert Mackey; and his parents, Mr. and Mrs. Parker Mackey, Sr.
Survivors include his wife, Elon Hinton Mackey; his daughter, Sue Mackey Augustus (Jim); his sons, William A. Mackey, Jr. (Sue) and Robert J. Mackey (Barbara); his sister-in-law, Mary Kate Cochrane; his stepsons, William A. Miller, Jr. (Jessica) and James C. Hamner (Libby); his grandchildren, Kim Mackey Rackham (Devaughan), Alex Mackey, III (Janice), Toney Olsen (Brennen), Brantly Seawright (Jabbar), Robert Mackey, Jr. (Kim), and Stephen Mackey (fiancée Mollie); 13 great-grandchildren; nieces, Emily Deal and Allison Vardeman; and many other nieces and nephews.
Captain Mackey was born February 21, 1924, in Tuscaloosa, Alabama to Parker and Ruby Mackey. He graduated from Tuscaloosa High School in 1941 having lettered in football and basketball. He then attended the Citadel for one year prior to being selected for the U.S. Navy's flight training program, receiving his Wings of Gold on June 5, 1943. A highly decorated naval aviator, Capt. Mackey served in aerial combat during World War II, the Korean War, and Vietnam. During his 31 years of service, he accumulated more than 6,000 hours of flight time and 425 aircraft carrier landings. He commanded Fighter Squadron 114 (VF-114), Air Group Nine (CAG-9), the USS Skagit (AKA-105), and the USS Okinawa (LPH-3). He retired from the Navy in 1973 following a tour as Commander, Atlantic Fleet Weapons Range and Commander, Fleet Air Caribbean. During his years of service, he continued his education at Georgia Tech in Atlanta, Ga., receiving his bachelor's degree at Washington University in St. Louis, Mo. Following his retirement, he and his wife, Warren, sailed the Caribbean for 10 years until returning to Tuscaloosa to spend time with family and friends. He was a member of First Presbyterian Church.
Pallbearers will be Jim Briggs, Dayton Hale, Sr., Stan Pate, Homer Smith, Dr. Jim Shamblin, Dr. Charles LeMaistre, Charles McBurney, Jack Warner, and Max Morton.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be made to First Presbyterian Church, Hospice of West Alabama, and National Naval Aviation Museum, 1750 Radford Blvd, Suite B, Pensacola, FL 32508. Published in Tuscaloosa News on May 6, 2010