October 9, 1930 – May 1, 2021
Graham MacHutchin passed away in La Jolla, California, on May 1, 2021. Born in Granby, Québéc to Vere and Ann MacHutchin, he was the youngest of three children. While in high school, he worked part time at a local radio station where he had his own news and sports programs. He attended McGill University and paid his own way through college by working during the summer holidays as a surveyor on the construction of the Québéc North Shore and Labrador Railway. He graduated from McGill University with a bachelor's degree in civil engineering in 1952.
After graduation he obtained a job as a sales representative for a concrete flooring contractor in Montreal, and the following year he obtained a loan and purchased an interest in the company. When he was 29, he sold his interest and started his own company, Duron Corporation, with offices in Montreal and Toronto. The company developed, manufactured, and installed industrial flooring and coatings, and within 12 years it employed over 500 employees with offices in nine cities across Canada and the United States, and he had become a member of the Young Presidents' Organization.
He loved sports and played tennis, squash, and golf. He also skied throughout Europe, Canada, and the U.S. and in 1974 while helicopter skiing with two friends in British Columbia they were caught in an avalanche and one of his dear friends was killed.
In 1976 the Parti Québécois, a political party that was to have the Province of Québéc become independent from Canada, was elected in Québéc. The construction industry and property values in Montreal were dramatically reduced, and in 1978 he sold his companies and moved to San Diego. He obtained real estate broker's license and began to purchase real estate. He and architect Paul Thoryk bid on the redevelopment of the Belmont Park amusement park, which had fallen into disrepair since it was built in 1925 and was no longer operating. He arranged for a division of San Diego Gas & Electric Company to join them as a partner, and the City of San Diego selected their bid and awarded them the contract to renovate Belmont Park. When local volunteers were unable to raise sufficient funds to renovate the Giant Dipper Roller Coaster on the adjacent property, he went to Santa Cruz, met the owner of the company that had restored and operated a similar roller coaster there, and convinced them to bid on the restoration of the coaster at Belmont Park. The City of San Diego subsequently selected their proposal to renovate and operate the coaster, and later he was awarded a lifetime pass to ride the roller coaster in appreciation of his efforts to save it.
He developed numerous real estate projects in San Diego and Imperial Counties, including the office building on Columbia St. and Morehouse Drive in San Diego, the Headquarters of the Bureau of Land Management in El Centro, and a 230-unit housing development in Calexico. He spent his last years managing his real estate investments.
Peacefully surrounded at his bedside by family, Graham passed. He was a kind and gracious man. Not at all judgmental, but excepting and forgiving, he was a pleasure to have in your company. He was the truest friend anyone could ever hope for. He treated everyone with respect. He conducted himself with integrity, honesty, and genuineness. He was a mentor to many, creating opportunities for younger protégés while guiding them along the way. He took his responsibilities to family to heart by providing his children with powerful guidance and opportunities that a child could only dream of, the best education, along with enrichment to nurture their personal development. He was loving, supportive and generous.
He was always ready to pick up a game of golf, squash, or tennis, loving a good challenge with a competitive edge. He collected art and wine, loved music from classical to jazz, and followed film and theater. His world travels were extraordinary, well-researched from a historical perspective, with evening dining at the finest restaurants. His wit and humor had a fun yet intellectual twist. Everything he did had a degree of purity to it. Although this brilliant, multi-talented man has left us, he leaves a lasting impact on those fortunate enough to have known him. He touched and changed lives for the better, and for that we are eternally grateful.
He is survived by his wife Joanne and children Catherine, Michael, James and Larna.
No public services are scheduled at this time. Receive a notification when services are updated.
May 11, 2021
Un caballero en todo el sentido de la palabra, siempre fue para mi
Un placer servirle a el y a su digna esposa por varios anos en Manhattan restaurant, siento mucho su partida .
May 4, 2021
A dear family friend who will be greatly missed by all the Menkes’s. Our memories run deep. Countless trips, a life-long friendship with Rene and Ann. Love of golf, sking, batgamon and countless tales to tell and remember! How we laughed and always will when thinking of Graham. We send the entire family our condolences and love.
Ann, John, Katrina and Alexandra Menkes