JA Snow Funeral Home


Alexander Joseph McKinnon

March 19, 1930October 9, 2020

On Friday, October 9, Alex McKinnon passed away peacefully at home at the age of 90, spending his last days as he lived his life - surrounded by family, friends, love and music.

Alex’s life was guided by faith, integrity and generosity. He loved music, story-telling and was a voracious reader with a keen interest in military history, politics and the Bible. He had a life-long passion for politics and he was the unofficial president of the Angus L. MacDonald fan club. Above all Alex loved his family, and throughout his life they were his number one priority. He adored his wife Geraldine who was his best friend and the love of his life, and who patiently cared for him during his decline due to Alzheimer’s.

Alex spent his early years on the shores of Melville Cove and enjoyed his summers with the extended McKinnon and Jamieson clans in Inverness. A gifted story-teller, Alex regaled family and friends with his youthful exploits during World War II working as a bellhop at the Carleton Hotel and his many adventures in war-time Halifax. Alex launched his career with Red Rose Tea, introducing the tea bag to Cape Breton. He later became Vice President of Sales and Marketing with MacCulloch Building Products. In 1978 he fulfilled his dream to open his own business and moved the family from Halifax to Port Hawkesbury, where he successfully built McKinnon Home Hardware with his wife Geraldine working by his side.

Community service was a guiding force in Alex’s life. He dedicated countless hours to many boards and volunteer activities. An advocate for music education, Alex worked to ensure opportunities for his own children as well as the broader Nova Scotia community through his involvement with the Halifax School Board in the 1970s and the Board of the Gaelic College in Cape Breton in the 1980s.

In retirement, Alex was an active and beloved member of two communities: Fleming Heights, Halifax and Broad Cove, Cape Breton. He and Geraldine enjoyed walking the trails of the Dingle and Frog Pond, the Inverness Boardwalk and the Broad Cove Road, often stopping to strike up conversations with friends and strangers alike. Summer evenings were spent side by side watching the spectacular sunset from their cottage deck in beautiful Broad Cove.

Alex’s love for his family is his lasting legacy. He is survived by his best friend and wife of 60 years Geraldine (Nellis); children Margaret (John Gray), Ian (Catherine Craig), MaryAnne (Andre Levesque), Christine (Paul MacDonald), Catherine (Alex Rhinelander) as well as his adored grandchildren and great grandchildren. Alex is also survived by his brother Murray McKinnon. He was predeceased by his parents MaryAnn (Jamieson) and Murdoch McKinnon, his brothers Hugh, Rupert and Neil; his sister Christina Martin and brother Francis who died in infancy.

Halifax visitation will take place Tuesday, October 20, 2:00 – 4:00 and 7:00 – 9:00 pm at Snow’s Funeral Home. Inverness visitation will take place Friday, October 23, 2:00 – 6:00 pm at Inverness Funeral Home. Funeral and burial will take place Saturday, October 24, 11:00 am at St. Margaret of Scotland Church in Broad Cove. Due to Covid restrictions the funeral is for family and close friends only.

In lieu of flowers donations may be made to the Alzheimer’s Society or Chalice.

To join the service via livestream:


  • Visitation

    Tuesday, October 20, 2020

  • Visitation

    Tuesday, October 20, 2020

  • Visitation

    Friday, October 23, 2020

  • Funeral Service

    Saturday, October 24, 2020



Alexander Joseph McKinnon

have a memory or condolence to add?

Allan MacMaster

October 27, 2020

Dear Geraldine, I was so sorry to hear about Alex and disappointed I could not be with your family during the visitation. You and Alex were very good to me during my summers while attending St. FX. I have many great memories of my time at the store, and of the conversations I had with Alex. He had a great respect and appreciation for all who worked for him and I know that was valued by everyone. May his spirit remain close to you until you are once again reunited. Sincerely, Allan

Rilla McLean

October 26, 2020

To Geraldine and all the McKinnon Family,
I was so sorry to hear recently of Alex's passing. Alex and his staff may have had the friendliest Home Hardware store in Canada. Hopefully time will heal the pain of losing him but not erase the wonderful memories of his long life.
Rilla McLean
22 MacQuarrie Drive
Port Hawkesbury

Keith Powers

October 24, 2020

I will miss so much Alex's friendship as he always had an encouraging word
and sound advice. In addition to his family he left a legacy of
service to the community as was evident in his contribution to
Inverness education in memory of his mothers family. Hospitality
was always on display and we enjoyed many visits with friends
to Broad Cove at celtic colors festival time, a tradition he started.
He was great man and my condolences to the family.

Brenda Radzijewski

October 24, 2020

Dear Geraldine and family.
Please accept our deepest condolences for the passing of your wonderful husband Alex. We enjoyed singing with him in the choir at Saint John the Baptist church. He was always a pleasure to be around. May he rest in peace.
Brenda and Tadek Radzijewski

Marion Marriott

October 24, 2020

Watched the Mass today and it was so beautiful, I miss him so much. God bless.

Penny Clark

October 24, 2020

Dearest Geraldine and Mary Pat and the whole family,
I was with you in spirit today by the grace of Alex’s funeral being “Live Streamed”.......and my heart goes out to you all at the loss of such an exceptional and incredible patriarch!
The service was such a perfect tribute to him, meaningful and full of his legacy.......... reflected in the readings and music and tributes..... it was just beautiful!!!!!
And I know that his modelling of what true and consistent Christian behaviour and demeanour should look like has honestly impacted virtually every person who was lucky enough to know him .......and allows that he will continue to provide inspiration and great respect in us all!
Sending you my deep affection and prayers and blessings ........may our good God comfort your hearts ........and may dear Alex rest in perfect peace!
Sincerely, “ Penny” XO

Rita Senécal

October 24, 2020

Dear Aunt Geraldine and cousins.
Robert, Gerald, Raymond and me, Rita would have loved to be with you celebrating Uncle Alex's full, inspiring and meaningful life. We were so happy to see him in Douglastown, last summer with Aunt Geraldine and our cousin Mary Ann. Fortunately, sickness had not altered the essence of who he was: a warm and generous man deeply in love with his wife, family, music, people and life whith a deep faith to guide his heart and actions. My admiration, Aunt Geraldine, for your love and patient support especially in these last years. My parent's last trip together was to visit you in Cape Breton, just a few weeks before Daddy died; they both loved so much the time spent with both of you. I'll leave you with this childhood memory that inevitably makes me joyfull: a trip in Irishtown, during the summer, riding in a car packed with cousins, windows open, singing , laughing and listening to stories from Uncle Alex.
Love and a warm hug to all of you from Laura's family

Jo-anne Macdonald

October 23, 2020

Dear Geraldine and Family: Your friendship with my Mom and Dad continued on through myself and your children. Going to the store for whatever Dad wanted, to be invited into your home for parties, to you visits here at 646 Granville Street or meeting you here and there will be remembered by me as so very special. Both of you have such great smiles, laughs and stories, well appreciated by all that came into your lives over all these years. I am heartfelt sorry for each and everyone, childred, grandchildren and great grandchild. I was unable to attend the wake in Inverness. Alex is and always will be watching over each and everyone.....his love, his faith, his compassion, his caring will always continue on through all the family. Hugs, love and prayers always, Jo-anne

Raymond Senecal

October 23, 2020

Nos très sincères condoléances de la part de Raymond Senecal et Nicole Brabant.

Benny and Carole MacInnis

October 22, 2020

Geraldine and family we are thinking of you during this very difficult time. Deepest sympathy to you and your family.
Alex will be missed. God Bless!


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