Richard Aubrey “Dick” McKinstry Jr.
Richard Aubrey “Dick” McKinstry Jr., 92, of Hoschton, Ga., went to be with the Lord on Saturday morning, January 12, 2019, shortly after midnight. He had suffered a stroke two days after Thanksgiving 2018 and quietly passed away at home with a smile on his face, surrounded by his family who had lovingly cared for him during his last years.
Dick was born in Stuttgart on June 30, 1926. Shortly afterwards, his family moved to Wilmar, where he grew up. He served in the U.S. Navy during World War II as a Motor Machinist’s Mate, 3rd Class on LSM 388. Notably, he was on the island of Okinawa preparing for the invasion of Japan when the war ended, mercifully for him and for his two children, seven grandchildren, 14 great-grandchildren and three great-great-grandchildren.
Dick attended Arkansas A&M College (now the University of Arkansas at Monticello), Tulane University and LeTourneau (Texas) Tech (now LeTourneau Universiuty), graduating in 1950. He married Mary Elizabeth Pollick, of Longview, TX, on September 1, 1950 and they moved to Stuttgart where he began work as an industrial engineer.
His successful career took Dick and Mary to Little Rock; Conway; Bentonville; Hannibal, Mo.; Rogers; Rio Piedras, Puerto Rico; and Augusta, Ga. They retired to Homer, Ga., in 1985 and lived there until Mary passed away in January 2001, six months after their 50th anniversary. On February 16, 2002, he married Lois Reeve of Marietta, Ga., and they lived in Acworth, Ga. until Lois passed away on May 16, 2016.
A disciplined and hard-working man, even in retirement, Dick set an extraordinarily high standard, both in perseverance as well as loving service to others. After retiring, he built a huge wood shop and spent his days designing and making a variety of products (when he wasn’t cultivating tomatoes in his greenhouse) and spent most weekends in his Ram Wood Products booth at the Pendergrass flea market. It simply was not in him to sit around.
A life-long Presbyterian, Dick was a founding member of Grace Presbyterian Church in Little Rock, where he also served as a deacon and church treasurer. Later, he served on the board of deacons at First Presbyterian in Rogers. Dick was a man of quiet but genuine faith, and his heart for service was especially evident in the caretaking role he played for both Mary and Lois in their extended illnesses.
Dick was pre-deceased by his beloved wives, Mary Elizabeth Pollick McKinstry and Lois Reeve McKinstry; his parents, R.A. McKinstry Sr. and Mattie Lee Haigh McKinstry of Wilmar; as well as one sister, Janie Lou McKinstry, and one brother, Victor Haigh McKinstry.
He is survived by his brother, Joe Lee McKinstry of Little Rock; his son, Richard “Skip” McKinstry of Oklahoma City; and his daughter, Nikki Lee McKinstry (Montie Ray) Robinson of Hoschton.
Funeral services with military honors were held Sunday, January 13, 2019 at Lawson Funeral Home Chapel. Montie Ray Robinson Jr. officiated. Interment was by cremation.
The family received friends Sunday, January 13, 2019 at the funeral home.
Gifts in memory of R.A. McKinstry Jr. may be made to the Bright Focus Foundation (www.brightfocus.org), which does research into Alzheimer’s disease, macular degeneration and glaucoma. Funeral arrangements were by Lawson Funeral Home of Hoschton.
Online guestbook: www.lawsonfuneralhome.org.