Maurice McDonell Jr.

Maurice McDonell Jr.


Maurice McDonell, Jr. passed away April 17, 2019 in Napa, CA. He was born March 27, 1936 in Juneau, AK and moved to Santa Monica, CA in 1943.

Maurice graduated from Venice High School in 1955 and was Valedictorian of his class. His legacy was fondly recalled by the school faculty 5 years later when his sisters followed in his footsteps at Venice High. He joined the Navy after graduating in 1955 and was immediately selected for flight school which led to his deployment to Pensacola FL. He was honorably discharged in Nov 1957. After serving in the Navy, he worked at Ungar and then at McDonnell Douglas in Long Beach, CA. He received an AA from Long Beach City College in 1974 and a BS in Business Administration from Long Beach State in 1977 majoring in Real Estate Finance. During those academic years, he did several adventures, including an 11,000 mile 1976 road trip with son Vince (then 13) in a bright orange BMW 2002 that passed through all 48 contiguous states. This trip involved extensive research on the ancestry of the family which Maurice continued working on for the next decade. The resulting compilation of family history resides in the Sutro Library Genealogy collection in San Francisco. In 1978, he put his education to work and embarked on a career in Real Estate Appraising which took him to Newport Beach, CA, then Auburn, CA and finally to the Calaveras County Assessor’s office in San Andreas, CA where he eventually ran for the County Assessor seat. In 1998 he moved to Gardnerville, NV and, in 2008, he made his last move—to Napa, CA where he truly enjoyed his life until he passed away. His passion for music, technology, classic films, history, reading, gardening and never-ending household projects ranging from minor to major was a constant source of joy and inspiration. A life truly lived well.

He is survived by his love, Persis, son Vincent and daughter-in-law Janice and two grandchildren, Lauren and Bradley. He was in frequent contact with his loving younger siblings, Marian, Maurine, and Alex. A celebration of life will be held in Irvine, CA in June.

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