Nancy Ann McClinch
23 December, 1946 – 15 May, 2020
Nancy McClinch was born in Bridgeport, Connecticut, on December 23, 1946, to Clayton and Natalie McClinch. She was the oldest of two siblings, followed by her younger brother Jerry. As a girl, she remembers tagging along on errands and fishing with her father. Nancy had a close bond with her mother. When Nancy would go out on a date, her mother would stay up and wait for her. When Nancy arrived home, they would talk well into the night discussing all the details, giggling like schoolgirls. When Nancy moved out, they would talk on the phone nightly and later in life, at least weekly. After she graduated from Trumbull High School in 1964, she became a flight attendant for TWA, based out of New York. She loved the travel that being a flight attendant afforded her. She met Michael Du Pont, a pilot, and they were married in 1972 (1972 – 1989). They moved to California and started their family, first with Joy-Danielle, and then moved again to Washington where Beth was born.
In those early years, Nancy was mostly a stay-at-home mom with her two girls. She was very active in her daughters’ schools, serving as PTA President and Brownie Troop Leader. She was very creative with her arts and crafts. She made stained glass art and sewed doll clothing. She loved to cook and even went to cooking school and took nutrition classes. For a spell, she ran her own catering business. She and Michael would host fabulous dinner parties. A well-remembered dish of hers was Lamb with mint jelly. Thanksgiving was her favorite holiday and she always prepared an extravagant feast with all elaborate fixings. She did her best to create a lovely family atmosphere.
It was at the age of 42 that Nancy matriculated at the University of Washington and graduated with honors in English Literature and a minor in Communications. Upon graduation, she began her career in property management. She loved being a property manager, and she worked her way up to become a regional manager and trainer. Property Management became her calling for the remainder of her life. In 1997 she moved to Los Angeles, which is really where her adventures began.
Nancy was fearless. Her daughters’ observed that she was fearless when it came to change and she always landed on her feet; she could embrace change as few people could. Los Angeles was so fitting for her because she liked good food and nice hotels. She enjoyed an active social life there. She loved luxury. Her motto in life was “Live for today, tomorrow will take care of itself.”
Every time she would go to a bar or restaurant, she would really connect with people. Complete strangers could immediately sense her acceptance and interest. They were drawn to her. She attracted people to her who needed acceptance. She was skilled at making connections with a broad range of people. Nancy had a lot of employees working under her and they could tell that she truly saw them. She saw each individual employee as family and they loved her for it. She managed folks with a soft touch, even baking cookies for them. She was generous and loved giving gifts. She incentivized her employees by giving them gift bags if they achieved their goals, or taking them out to eat and celebrating their achievements. Nancy was nothing if not hugely generous. She was so overflowing with generosity that it was said of her that if she received a dollar she would give away 75 cents, or maybe… even the whole dollar. She just felt compelled to give and give.
Her passionate work ethic, her generosity, and love for her vocation showed vividly in her last job as a property manager for an apartment complex on Mercer Island. Before the pandemic, she would cook big meals for the residents. She was the one who was always there for emergencies or to just help out. She swept the hallways and painted the curbs. She could rent out empty apartments so quickly. She loved working with people. And she ended up making people there just feel like she cared about them and that they were significant. Her gift was that she deeply connected with people.
It could easily be said that Nancy lived to make people smile. She loved to make people laugh and be happy. She would even make fun of herself in order to uplift others and help them to feel comfortable. She liked having people around her. And people wanted to be around her too.
Nancy had many interests. Besides throwing a lavish dinner party, she loved the Blues, Motown, or any soulful music. She loved reading, especially about other cultures. She loved to garden; her garden was always overflowing with flowers and color. She loved to shop. She loved good wine. She loved to create beautiful spaces; every corner of her living space was always dedicated to some beautiful object or decoration. She reveled in her private spiritual life too; praying nightly. She lived life so fully and lived so much for the moment, that she often told her daughters, jokingly, “I’ll treat you now, because there will be nothing left when I’m gone!” She believed in living for today and enjoying the present moment. Though it was a surprise and shock that she passed so suddenly, she went out spending all the life she had been given. She spent it all.
She was so proud of her daughters and the women they had become. She was proud of her work accomplishments. She was also proud of her unique ability to make human connections. People immediately felt at ease around her. One time, in LA, Nancy went to a Halloween Parade in North Hollywood. There were people from all different walks of life there. By the end of the parade, she had the young people following her around, declaring her to be their newly adopted mother. They were drawn to her crazy, fun, but also attentive, energy. People clung to her.
The one time Nancy left the US to go traveling, she took her daughter Joy to the Amazon. She was adventurous on her own terms. At the Amazon hotel where they were staying, she requested a hairdryer for their room, because she wanted to look her best in every circumstance. Though the hotel staff nicknamed her “Nancy Hair Dryer”, it proved to be a coveted tool in the humidity and the envy of the other guests! She became known to the other guests in the hotel bar for being the only one brave enough to fight off the monkeys who attempted to steal the drinks out of the guest’s hands. She would NOT lose her beverage to a primate!
Nancy Ann McClinch, of Mercer Island, Washington, died suddenly at her home on May 15, 2020. She was 73 years old.
Nancy leaves behind daughters Joy-Danielle du Pont (with David Ear) and Beth du Pont, a brother Jerry (with KaJe) McClinch, her nephews Christopher and Matthew, many cousins, and friends.
Nancy will be remembered for her boundless energy. She moved fast. She walked fast. One time at Disneyland, she ran in front of some kids to get in line first. She said, “I’m bigger than they are!” She was like a kid herself and she played by her own rules.
She will be remembered for her easy charismatic connection to people. The people in her life, and also strangers, felt her love and acceptance.
Nancy will also be remembered as someone who spread infectious joy to others through her sense of humor and her generosity. She loved to treat people; she was always the first to reach for the tab.
She will continue to inspire those she leaves behind for the shining example she was of resiliency, and for her embrace of whatever life flung at her.
We will truly miss this loving, generous, and thoughtful woman, Nancy. But we will treasure the memory of her deeply in our hearts. Forever.
No public services are scheduled at this time. Receive a notification when services are updated.
Nancy Ann McClinch
30 June 2020
I first met Nancy when I was working at the RREEF funds and she was a site community manager in Redmond Washington. I knew her to be the most enthusiastic and dedicated community manager and always enjoyed being around her. We would find ways to make each other laugh for hours on end. I was excited that I had the opportunity to promote Nancy to a Regional Manager and take her to a different company with me on a few occasions.
One the memories that I enjoyed the most was how she and I would argue playfully about how to best write property reports in business writing and I would change some of the things she stated and she would remind me that she has a degree based on writing stories. We would laugh and put our respective heads together to make excellent reports.
Nancy always had such amazing energy and words of wisdom and I valued our friendship over the years tremendously. She became a dear friend and her loss runs wide and deep not only for me but for the many people she has left in her wake.
I loved her and always will and her beautiful daughters, Joy and Beth.
I will miss her dearly...
19 May 2020
The moment you arrived at Mercer View Terrace, you were always thinking about us and doing things for us. You did so much to try to bring us together as a community. I can hear your voice, see your smile, and hear you sweeping and vacuuming. Miss you!