Donald Wayne McCoy, of Grants Pass, OR, passed away at age 85 in his home early in the morning of April 23rd after battling pancreatic cancer.
Don was born in Medford, OR on June 10, 1937 to Maurice Arthur McCoy and Alice Belle Hay. He grew up in Grants Pass, graduating from Grants Pass High School in 1956. He went on to earn a bachelor’s degree in education from Southern Oregon University and a master’s degree in administration from University of Oregon. He joined the Army Reserves in 1958 and was called to active duty during the Berlin Crisis, serving until 1964.
In 1959 Don married Darlene Pigg and they raised their boys, Patrick and Sean, in Central Point and Grants Pass. Darlene passed away in 1985.
Don spent 33 years in education, teaching at every school in Central Point and coaching every sport at one time or another. He was an original teacher at Scenic Junior High, teaching math and science. He also taught reading, especially working with kids who had extra trouble. Later in his career he worked as vice principal of Flemming Middle School and then principal of Selma Elementary.
In 1987, Don married Joanne Fleishman Slaven and spent the rest of his life together with her. They shared a passion for traveling, spending winters in Yuma, Arizona, visiting Europe, Asia, Australia, Egypt and the Holy Land seeing all 50 states, 48 in their well-loved motorhome.
He deeply loved his family and he and Joanne enjoyed camping, darts, mini golf, and many other activities with their granddaughters, cheering them on in any and all achievements. He loved spending time fishing, competing in shuffleboard tournaments, having weekly game nights with friends and cheering on his beloved Oregon Ducks.
Serving in various roles in First Christian Church in Grants Pass, Don was appointed Elder and greatly valued the time he spent serving in that capacity. He was a devoted Christian and always looked for ways to bring light into the lives of everyone that he met.
Don is survived by: his wife, Joanne McCoy; son, Sean McCoy; sister, Sally Wright; 5 grandchildren – Jessica Taylor, Lela Miller, Creedance McCoy, Alissa McCoy and Abby McCoy; and 5 great-grandchildren.
He is preceded in death by: his parents, Maurice and Alice McCoy; his older brother, Ronald McCoy; his son, Patrick McCoy; and his great-granddaughter, Ava Daniels.
A celebration of life will be held at 11:00 am on Saturday, April 29th at First Christian Church 305 SW H Street, Grants Pass, OR 97526. Donations can be made in memory of Don to Helen Speares Cancer Center or Asante Hospice.