Nancy Claire Williams McDonald passed away Friday, February 19, following a short illness. Her passing brought an end to a life - in this world – that was devoted to love and service for others, at home and in the community. She was 86 years old.
Nancy was born October16, 1934, in Kingston, Pennsylvania, the daughter of Fred and Velma Williams. She spent her early years in Kingston before moving to nearby Trucksville in 1946. She attended school there, graduating in 1951 from Kingston Township-Dallas Borough High School. During her high school years, riding horses was her passion and she won many ribbons for riding three-gaited horses. Her favorite horse was Dixie.
Following graduation, she pursued a career in retail, working at Percy Brown’s and The Boston Store – both Wilkes-Barre landmarks - until her marriage to Gunnery Sergeant Francis McDonald, USMC, whom she had met in the course of her work at The Boston Store as a model for the annual fashion show that finished with a military wedding ceremony, with Marines provided by Sgt. McDonald, who was a recruiting officer in Wilkes-Barre at the time.
They were married in January, 1957, at Trucksville United Methodist Church, which Nancy’s family had joined in 1946, and where she had served as a Sunday school teacher, and produced the children's Christmas pageants.
The years following that marriage were a time of travel for Nancy and Francis – and later, their children - as he was posted to a variety of duty stations in Pennsylvania, Virginia, North Carolina and elsewhere. But she never severed her ties to the Keystone State, returning there with her children, close to family and friends on those occasions when Francis was posted overseas. But no matter where they lived, Nancy got involved in the community and always set up a home filled with laughter and love.
That involvement was multi-faceted, touching upon everything from the aforementioned church service, to her work for the Dallas Sesquicentennial Committee. But her deepest and longest-running community service was for the Boy Scouts of America. Nancy first joined scouting at Marine Corps base Camp Lejeune, North Carolina, with Cub Scout Pack 390. When they moved once again to Pennsylvania, she joined Cub Scout Pack 281.
Over the years she was a den mother, a den leader coach, and organized the very first Cub Day Camp in Penn Mountains Council. Honors and accomplishment in the course of her service included the Silver Faun, being part of Akela Calls Staff, earning the Wood Badge, teaching skits and puppets at Pow Wows, being a Unit Commissioner, and participating in University of Scouting. More importantly she loved working with scouts, their families, and all the wonderful leaders she felt privileged to work with over the years. In 2014 she earned her 50-year pin and was presented with the James E. West Award for a lifetime of dedication to the Cub Scout organization.
Those who knew her have said it would be impossible to estimate how many thousands of live she touched in the course of her service.
In the midst of all that she also found time to pursue interests in travel and tourism, drawing. movies, television, and the music of Nelson Eddy and Jeanette MacDonald.
Nancy was preceded in death by her parents, by her brother Fred, her husband Francis, and by her son Patrick. She is survived by her son Jeff McDonald, his wife Rita and their sons Andrew and Stephen; her daughter Linda Van Orden, her husband Clark, and their daughters Jessica and Katie.
Nancy’s family would like to offer their thanks to Dr. Richard M. Oley for his wonderful and dedicated care over the years. Also, the entire staff of the Meadows Nursing and Rehab Center in Dallas for the wonderful and compassionate care. And the church family at Trucksville United Methodist Church for their continued prayers and support during this difficult time.
In lieu of flowers, the family asks that donations in Nancy’s memory be made to Cub Scout Pack 281 of Dallas, c/o 46 Jackson Street, Dallas, Pa. 18612 or Trucksville United Methodist Church c/o 40 Knob Hill Road, Trucksville, Pa. 18708.
Memorial service will be held privately. Friends may call Friday, April 9, 2021 from 6 to 8 pm at The Richard H. Disque Funeral Home, Inc., 2940 memorial Highway, Dallas. COVID-19 restrictions will be observed, social distancing and masks will be required. Online condolences can be made at Disquefuneralhome.com
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