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    Obituaries » Tommy Ray McDonald

    Tommy Ray McDonald

    December 2, 1941 – June 26, 2020

    A memorial service will be conducted Saturday, July 18th at 10:00 am, at Lakes Church, formerly known as 1st Baptist Church at the Mall, 1010 E. Memorial Blvd., Lakeland, in the GO Center, with visitation beginning at 9:00 am. A separate memorial service will be held at Carr’s Hill Baptist Church in Brevard, NC, at a later date.

    In lieu of flowers, memorial donations can be made out to Good Samaritan’s Purse at tinyurl.com/TRMcdonald or the Lakeland Dreadnaught Band Boosters, in memory of Tom McDonald, 726 Hollingsworth Rd., Lakeland, FL 33801.

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    LAKELAND – Mr. Tommy Ray McDonald died Friday, June 26, 2020, at Lakeland Hospice House due to congestive heart failure.

    Tommy was born on December 2, 1941, in Winnsboro, South Carolina. His family moved to Delray Beach, Florida, in 1959. He graduated from Seacrest High School in Boyton Beach in 1960 and Florida State University in 1964. Tommy received his Master of Administration Degree at Rollins College in 1975. He worked for the Polk County Public Schools for thirty-one years, serving as band director of Lakeland Jr. High School (1964-1965), Crystal Lake Jr. High School (1965-1967), and Kathleen Sr. High School (1967-1975). He then became an administrator for Kathleen Jr. High School (1975-1978), Lake Gibson Sr. High School (1978-1981), and Fort Meade High School (1981-1984). Tommy then became Music Supervisor for Polk County Public Schools beginning in 1984. In 1987, he became the Director of Music, Fine Arts, and Magnet Schools. Tommy was the founding administrator of Harrison School for the Arts. In June of 1995, he retired from the PCPS. Tommy later became an associate professor of music at Southeastern College in Lakeland (1995-1998) and helped with the pre-internship program for music majors at Florida Southern College in 2003. He made an enormous contribution to fine arts education in Polk County. He enjoyed serving in the churches he worked at or attended as a choir director, youth pastor, deacon, orchestra member, Deacon Emeritus, and member of the Florida Southern Baptist disaster relief team.

    Tommy was predeceased by his son, Richard McDonald, parents, Haskell and Alethia Murphy McDonald, and his brother, Bobby McDonald.

    Tommy is survived by his wife, Jean Cline McDonald, daughters, Alisa Strike (Jay) of Valrico, and Melissa Roberts (Ben) of Lakeland, daughter-in-law, Nicole Stout McDonald of Lakeland, grandchildren, Caleb and Levi McDonald, Sam and Jena Roberts, all of Lakeland, and Sarah and Joel Strike of Valrico, sisters-in-law Linda Smith of Georgia, Carolyn Ruesch (Ernie) and Gail Meyers (Bill) of North Carolina, and Marty McDonald of Ocklawaha, 10 nieces and nephews, and numerous great-nieces and nephews.

    A memorial service will be conducted Saturday, July 18th at 10:00 am, at Lakes Church, formerly known as 1st Baptist Church at the Mall, 1010 E. Memorial Blvd., Lakeland, in the GO Center, with visitation beginning at 9:00 am. A separate memorial service will be held at Carr’s Hill Baptist Church in Brevard, NC, at a later date.

    In lieu of flowers, memorial donations can be made out to Good Samaritan’s Purse at tinyurl.com/TRMcdonald or the Lakeland Dreadnaught Band Boosters, in memory of Tom McDonald, 726 Hollingsworth Rd., Lakeland, FL 33801.

     

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