Charles R. “Chuck” MacDonald, Hempfield Township, PA – Obituary

My Valley Tributes

July 16, 2019

Charles R. "Chucl" MacDonald, Hempfield Township, Pennsylvania - obit
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HEMPFIELD TOWNSHIP, Pennsylvania (MyValleyTributes) – Charles R. “Chuck” MacDonald, CSP, age 85, of Hempfield Township, passed away peacefully Tuesday evening, July 16, 2019, in St. Paul’s Continuing Care Community. 

Chuck was born in Chambersburg, Pennsylvania on February 11, 1934, to Roy and Katherine (Funk) MacDonald.

He was a 1951 graduate of Washington Township High School, where he graduated as the class valedictorian. Chuck received his B.A. in Social Studies from Allegheny College. While at Allegheny, he was a member of the Alpha Chapter of Delta Tau Delta Fraternity and was part of the ROTC program.

In the fall of 1955, he entered the U.S. Air Force and completed his basic training at Lackland Air Force Base, San Antonio, Texas. He attended pilot training at Malden Air Base, Malden, Missouri and Greenville Air Force Base, Greenville, Massachusetts and further trained as a weapons controller at Eglin Air Force Base, Panama City, Florida. He was then assigned to the 726th Aircraft Control and Warning Squadron at Shaw Air Force Base, Sumter, South Carolina, where he was promoted to First Lieutenant. In the fall of 1959, Chuck completed his active duty service and was discharged with the rank of captain. He would then go on to a 37-year career within the safety sector. 

From 1959-1973, he was employed by Pittsburgh Group Companies, Columbia Gas System. He worked as an assistant training director from 1960-1967, was the Assistant Safety Director from 1967-1970 and from 1970-1973, served as the Safety Director and had received his rating as a Certified Safety Professional in 1972. From 1973-1975 he was employed by ESSI, Inc., Pittsburgh, as the President of Occupational Safety and Health Division. From 1975-1985 he served as a Safety Director for U.S. Steel Corporation Subidiary Railroads, responsible for accident prevention, regulatory compliance and operational and safety training for nine railroads. Chuck would then work for ten years for the Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority (SEPTA), where he was responsible for managing System Safety and Risk Management, retiring in 1996.

He was a member of The Association of American Railroads Safety Section, served as Chairman of AAR Safety Section and for several years served on the AAR Committee which met with the Federal Railroad Administration enforcement branch. He was also a professional member of the American Society of Safety Engineers, where he served as President for the Western PA Chapter from 1982-1983 and later as the President of the Philadelphia Chapter from 1991-1992 and had served several terms as Regional Assistant Vice President for Membership, ASSE. 

Survivors include his wife, the former Melissa A. (Reiser) Gregory, whom he married on October 7, 1985; a daughter, Ellen Shaffer and her husband, Gordon, of Richmond, Virginia; a son, Paul MacDonald and his wife, Lori, of Ridgefield, Connecticut; a stepdaughter, Alissa (Gregory) Gentile and her husband, Mike, of Greenville; a stepson, Chad Gregory and his wife, Annmarie, of Syracuse, New York; four grandchildren; six stepgrandchildren and one great-grandchild.

A private family funeral will be held in Loutzenhiser-Jordan Funeral Home and Cremation Services, Inc., 366-368 South Main Street, Greenville, with Rev. Julia Fraser, Chaplain of St. Paul’s Continuing Care Community, officiating.

Greenville VFW Post #3374 will render military honors at the conclusion of the service.

Burial will be in Shenango Valley Cemetery. Memorial contributions may be made to St. Paul’s Continuing Care Community, 339 East Jamestown Road, Greenville, PA 16125.

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