Kenneth Paul MCDONALD Jr.
May 30, 1940 – August 4, 2018
Kenneth Paul McDonald, Jr., age 78, passed away peacefully at home surrounded by family on August 4 after a courageous battle with cancer.
Ken was born on May 3, 1940 and was preceded in death by his parents, Marion and Ken McDonald, Sr. He is survived by his wife of 45 years, Sandra McDonald, daughter Austin Fleener and son-in-law Ryan Fleener, his beloved grandson, Colt Grey Fleener, brother Tom McDonald and his wife Carolyn and their children, Mark McDonald and Meredith Stewart.
Ken attended Dobbins Bennet High School in Kingsport, TN and achieved the level of Eagle Scout. He is a graduate of the University of Tennessee where he was President of Lamda Chi Alpha fraternity. He then received a commission in the U.S. Army and served as an artillery officer and helicopter pilot stationed in Ft. Benning, GA, receiving an accommodation medal for leadership.
After leaving the Army , Ken joined IBM in Montgomery, AL where he met his wife Sandra and they were married in 1973. He served in various sales and management positions with IBM in Montgomery, Atlanta and then in Nashville where they moved in 1978 to make their permanent home.
In 1993, Ken joined AmSurg , which was a start-up company in the outpatient surgery center business. He was named CEO of AmSurg in 1994 and his proudest accomplishment was the privilege of leading his AmSurg colleagues whose hard work and determination produced the growth that led to the success of AmSurg. He took the company public in 1997 and at the time he retired in 2007, AmSurg had become the largest outpatient surgery center company in the United States. After his retirement, Ken continued to serve on the Board of Directors of AmSurg until 2012. He was also active in the community serving on the boards of Watkins College and the St. Thomas Foundation.
Ken had many talents in addition to his leadership skills. He was an accomplished pianist, an avid and accomplished skier and in retirement he returned to his love of flying, renewing his pilot’s license. Ken’s first love was his family, his wife Sandra, daughter Austin and especially his grandson Colt. When Colt was young he pronounced his grandad’s name as “King” and the name stuck. And that is how he will be remembered – as the King of his family.
We give special thanks to his caretakers, Suzie, Deanna and Pat from Alive Hospice.
There will be a private family funeral service at Christ Church Cathedral. The family very much appreciates the support and caring of Reverend Lissa Smith of Christ Cathedral during this time. Memorial donations can be made to Alive Hospice or Christ Church Cathedral.
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