Cover photo for Gaylan McDonald's Obituary
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1943 Gaylan 2024

Gaylan McDonald

January 20, 1943 — June 21, 2024

On June 21, 2024, Gaylan McDonald left this earth for his heavenly home. A memorial service in his honor will be 2:00 pm, July 8, 2024, at Woodway Methodist Church.

Gaylan was born on January 20, 1943, in Burkburnett, Texas to Homer Lee and Gwendolyn McDonald where he attended Burkburnett schools. After graduating from high school, he attended Midwestern State University and in 1966 he received his Bachelor of Science in Biology and Geology. During that time, he was accepted as a member of Tri-Beta, a national honorary society for biology students. 

Following college, he served in the Air Force Reserve. He pursued a career in finance that resulted in an almost 50-year-long career with Southwest National Bank in Wichita Falls and ended with his retirement from Bank of America in 2011. From the mid-1970s through the 1980s, he frequently was a guest lecturer about consumer lending practices at Texas State Bankers Association meetings, and in 1976 he received an Outstanding Achievement Award for performance from Southwest National Bank. Throughout the years he continued to be recognized for such performance with Nations and Bank of America. Gaylan was phenominal in his giving spirit, which led to him become a lifteime member of Optimist International and was a twenty six gallon donor to the American Red Cross.

On May 28, 1965, he married Carolyn Teague. This union of 56 years resulted in a partnership filled with love and joy. They were blessed with two fantastic children and three beautifully wonderful grandchildren.

Through the years he served churches as a youth group sponsor and along with his wife he helped to shape the lives of so many young people. He was a dad not only to his children but so many others. He was also a deacon, elder, and greeter to everyone entering the church door on Sunday mornings.

In retirement, he enjoyed working in the yard, camping, and volunteering for his church. Among his greatest prizes were his children and grandchildren. He was always front and center for all their activities, taking great pride in their accomplishments.

He is survived by his wife of 56 years, Carolyn, his sister Margaret Ford, children Richard McDonald and fiancé Colleen Courtney, his daughter Michelle Leighe and son-in-law Mario Fuentes. Grandchildren Dustin Lee McDonald, Courtney Leighe McDonald and husband Jared, Reece Campbell Pellegrino, and girlfriend Savannah Wood, as well as many nieces, nephews, and goddaughter Keila Beth Compton.

Gaylan’s humor and love for life and family will be dearly missed.Gaylan's deep faith in the Lord lets us rest assured that we will see him again, we will be greeted with one of those big hugs he loved so much to give. 

Memorials may be made to Woodway Methodist Building Fund in his honor at 21000 Woodway Drive, Waco, Texas 76712.

Service Schedule

Past Services

Memorial Service

Monday, July 8, 2024

Starts at 2:00 pm (Central time)

Woodway First United Methodist Church

, Woodway, TX 76712

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