On November 8, 2021, Leo Edward McKenzie Sr., passed away at the age of 92. Leo was born and raised in Cumberland, MD, the youngest of nine children, to Walter and Catherine McKenzie. Leo’s early hobby were in Ham radio communications, The Boy Scouts and he also was active in a marching band. He worked at Speelman’s ice cream factory prior to serving in the United States Army Signal Corp from 1951 to 1953. After serving our country, Leo earned an Electrical Engineering Bachelor’s Degree from George Washington University. He was employed by John Hopkins University Applied Physics Lab in Laurel MD for 50 years. Leo made huge contributions in advancing radio-frequency microwave design, missile guidance systems, radar and fire control systems, and the test and evaluation of surface communications, weapons, and sensor systems. He continued to advise even after entering retirement.
Leo married the love of his life, Vivian JoAnn Saville in September 1955. They initially made their home in Rockville MD, before settling on thirteen acres in Fulton MD. While raising their six children, they cultivated the land into a working farm. Year after year, they planted, harvested and preserved acres of fruits and vegetables. The farm housed pigs, chickens, cows, and turkeys. Leo was a devoted and loving husband and father, and he instilled in his children and grandchildren the importance of family and the value of being self-sufficient with a strong work ethic. Leo became a talented mechanic, photographer, and handyman, and he openly shared his knowledge with his children and grandchildren. The family became active members of St. Louis Church in Clarksville, MD and later transitioned to St. Francis of Assisi Catholic Church in Fulton, MD.
In addition to his wife, Leo is survived by their daughter Patricia Walter and husband David, their sons Leo McKenzie Jr. and wife Maryanne, Steven McKenzie and wife Dale, James McKenzie and wife Donna, Dennis McKenzie and wife Heather, and David McKenzie and wife Teresa; grandchildren: Nathan (Liz), Kelley (Dave), Matthew (Jess), Katlin (Greg), Amanda (Gene), Cody (Casey), Catherine, Rachael, Alex, Megan and Sarah; and three great grandchildren: Mackenzie, Gage, and Lydia. He also has numerous nieces, nephews, cousins, and other extended family members. Leo is preceded in death by his parents, three brothers, and five sisters.
Relatives and friends may call at Donaldson Funeral Home of Clarksville, 12540 Clarksville Pike, Clarksville, MD 21029 on Sunday November 14, 2021, 2:00-4:00 p.m. and 6:00-8:00 p.m. A time of Sharing will begin at 2:30 PM during the afternoon visitation. The family would love for you to share a favorite story about Leo. The Funeral Service will be held on Monday, November 15, 2021 at 9 a.m. at St. Francis of Assisi Catholic Church, 8300 Old Columbia Road, Fulton MD 20759, with the internment at Linthicum Chapel Cemetery on Route 108 in Clarksville, MD 21029. Following the internment, friends and family are invited to a reception at Abiding Savior Lutheran Church, 10689 Owen Brown Road, Columbia, MD 21044.
To send flowers to Leo's family, please visit our floral store.
Gilchrist Hospice - Columbia
6336 Cedar Lane, Columbia (Howard county) MD 21044
American Cancer Society
P.O. Box 22718, Oklahoma City OK 73123
St. Francis of Assisi Catholic Church
8300 Old Columbia Rd, Fulton MD