Feb. 7, 1925 – Aug. 8, 2014
Richard “Mac” McRostie died on Friday, Aug. 8, 2014. He was born in Owatonna, Minn., on Feb. 7, 1925, to Neil Hale and Myrtle Julia McRostie. He graduated from Owatonna High School on May 20, 1943. On July 1, 1943, he started active duty in the U.S. Navy at Marquette University in Milwaukee, Wis. In February 1944 he transferred to the NROTC Unit at the University of Michigan, where he was in the U.S. Navy V-12 Unit. On Oct. 20, 1945, he graduated with an engineering degree and was commissioned as an ensign in the Navy.
Early in 1946, he reported to 12th Naval District in San Francisco, and then was assigned to serve in Pearl Harbor with the Administrative Command Mine Forces U.S. Pacific Fleet. He was the officer in charge of the Administrative Command Mine Forces Pacific Repair Facilities. He served in various mine warfare assignments in the Pacific, in China and at Eniwetok, where he witnessed three atomic test blasts.
When he returned to the United States, he married Virginia Lee Pahl on July 9, 1949, in Columbus, Ohio. He was assigned to the General Line School in Newport, R.I. Then he served aboard the USS Fitch (DMS-25) in Charleston, S.C. Following that, he served as captain of the USS Verdin (AMS-38). Next, he was assigned as an instructor at the U.S. Naval Academy in Annapolis, Md. Richard James McRostie Jr. was born at the Naval Academy hospital on Sept. 29, 1953.
Next, Mac served as the executive officer on the USS Bearss (DD-654) in Norfolk, Va. Susan Eleanor McRostie was born on Aug. 12, 1955. Mac served on the Operational Development Force in Norfolk, VA. In 1960, he was a student at the U.S. Naval War College in Newport, R.I. After graduation, he served on the staff at the War College. Then in 1962 he served as the executive officer on the USS Cambria (APA-36). In early 1964, he had the solemn privilege of representing his shipmates of the Cambria by laying a wreath at the tomb of President John F. Kennedy.
Following retirement from the Navy at the end of 1964, he went to work as the first layperson for the Washington, D.C., Presbytery in stewardship development. While working in Washington, he participated in the 1965 civil rights march on Montgomery, Ala. In 1969, he was invited to serve in the Presbyterian Synod office in San Francisco. There he served as the stewardship development officer covering a coastal area from the Oregon border to Gonzalez, Calif.
Following that, he worked for the United Negro College Fund and Fundraising Associates. At the conclusion of his career, he and Virginia had their own fundraising company.
In 2000, Mac and Virginia moved into the new University Retirement Community in Davis. At URC, Mac organized the golfers and arranged weekly tee times; hosted an annual banquet for the golfers and their wives; and facilitated several golfing vacation trips to Mexico. He also promoted the URC Foundation and prepared yearly financial reports for the residents. The reports were proof-ready, thus saving money.
He was an avid golfer and enjoyed collecting stamps and coins, and model trains.
Mac was preceded in death by his parents and his daughter Susan. He is survived by his wife of 65 years, Virginia; his brother Clair (Ursula) of St. Peter, Minn.; his son Rick (Helen) of Eureka; and his granddaughters, Amber of Roseville and Lindsey of San Jose.
He lived a full and happy life of service to God, his country, his family, his friends and others. To God be the glory, great things he has done in and through his servant Mac McRostie!
A Celebration of Life will begin at 1:30 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 30, at the University Retirement Community, 1515 Shasta Drive in Davis.