Arturo Americo McDonald Sr., 85, devoted and much-loved husband, father, grandfather, great grandfather, and friend, entered into eternal rest Wednesday March 27, 2019 in Los Fresnos with his family by his side.
He was born in Harlingen, Texas to Rudolfo and Hortencia McDonald, and was raised in San Benito, Texas with his adoptive parents, Manuel and Librada Maza.
He is preceded into eternal rest by his parents, sister Gloria Bowery and brother Anibal McDonald.
Left to cherish his memory is his loving wife Irma S. McDonald. He will be extremely missed by his children, Diana Napier (Dave), Judge Arturo A. McDonald Jr. (Sandy), Deborah A. Walk (Larry), 8 grandchildren and 19 great-grandchildren. Sister Maria McDonald Weaver, brothers Sergio Medina and Alberto McDonald. And numerous nieces, nephews, in-laws and many close friends. He will live on through all the treasured memories he has left us.
His integrity, determination and hard work ethics, took him from age of 6, shining shoes to an Assistant Superintendent within the Brownsville Independent School District (BISD). Upon his retirement from BISD, he immediately was recruited by the Texas Department of Criminal Justice, as Regional Director of Education Rehabilitation.
He attended San Benito schools, where he left early to serve his country with the United States Marine Corp. His achievements during his time in the service was earning his GED, a member in the Marine Corp boxing team, climbing Mt. Fuji in Japan, and being very proud he had made it in two days, and climbing Mt. Suribachi, Iwo Jima. He furthered his education at Texas Southmost College. Where he flourished as President of Student Affairs and was elected “Most Handsome”. Attended the University of Texas in Austin and subsequently earned a bachelor’s and Master’s in School Administration from Texas A&I University Kingsville. He served Fellowship Leadership training at the University of New York City, University of New York State in Albany, University of Wyoming, and the University of Tulsa Oklahoma State.
Early in his career, he worked with BISD as a coach at Ebony Heights Elementary, left the district to assist in organizing the initial drive to create the Brownsville Boys Club, where he eventually became the first Executive Director. He then was lured back to BISD as the Adult Education Director, a rewarding position, assisting and mentoring students through their GED journey. This position came with special achievements: serving as President and Treasurer for the National Association of Adult Educators. Was honored as the first President of the Texas Association of Adult Educators. Promoting education was one of his many priorities in life.
In retirement, he enjoyed being with his family, traveling, playing golf, where he once bragged that he, ” beat all the senior members of the Brownsville PAGA Senior Club at least once!”.
His most enjoyable activity in retirement was his camaraderie with his fellow veterans at the VFW.
Memorial services will be held on Sunday, March 31, 2019 from 2 to 5 PM at Sunset Memorial Funeral Home with a chapel service at 3 PM and military honors provided by VFW Post 2035 at 4 PM. Interment will be on April 1, 2019 at 1:00 PM at the Rio Grande Valley State Veterans Cemetery, 2520 S. Inspiration Rd. in Mission, Texas.
The family requests that in lieu of floral arrangements that a donation in his honor be sent to the Veterans of Foreign Wars, 1801 Veterans Blvd. Brownsville, Texas.
“You left us beautiful memories,
your love is still our guide,
and though we cannot see you,
you are always at our side.”