Thursday, June 24, 2021


David Taylor MacKay


David Taylor MacKay of Madison, son of the late Donald and Ruth MacKay, passed away Sept. 27 after an arduous battle with interstitial lung disease. He is survived by his children Dawn MacKay Sheridan, Susan MacKay Weglein, and James, Meade, and Nathan MacKay; 9 grandchildren; 3 great-grandchildren; a sister, Elizabeth MacKay Pareti; and several nieces and nephews. He was predeceased by his sister Ruth MacKay Inkster.

Born May 26, 1940, in Derby, David lived most of his life in Madison, where he attended the Hand Academy Consolidated School from kindergarten through 10th grade, when his parents moved to Canandaigua, New York. In 1958, he graduated from Canandaigua High School, where he was a star on the swim team. He studied engineering at Rochester Institute of Technology. David spent his career in the building trades, primarily as a supervisor of bridge and highway construction projects, including parts of Rte. 9. With his analytical mind, David was a whiz with tools and machines. There wasn’t much he couldn’t build, fix, or improve upon.

He was widely read, always well informed, and avidly followed current events. A natural raconteur, there was nothing David liked more than regaling friends with an endless supply of stories and yarns—most of them true! David was happiest outdoors. He took great pleasure in his gardens and feeding the many species of birds attracted to his feeders. His greatest love was the sea. From childhood, he spent as much time as possible on the water. For years he enjoyed fishing for lobster out of Clinton Harbor and was known locally as “Captain Dave.”

His favorite poem was Sea Fever, which he would recite with or without encouragement! “I must down to the seas again, to the lonely sea and the sky, and all I ask is a tall ship and a star to steer her by.” Fittingly, it ends: “I must down to the seas again, to the vagrant gypsy life. And all I ask is a merry yarn from a laughing fellow rover, and quiet sleep and a sweet dream when the long trick’s over.”

Due to the COVID pandemic, graveside services and interment will be private. Memorial contributions may be made to MCS Food Pantry, c/o Madison Community Services, PO Box 148, Madison, CT 06443, or Bauer Park Fund, c/o Madison Beach and Recreation Dept., 8 Campus Dr., Madison, CT 06443. Arrangements in the care of the Guilford Funeral Home, 115 Church St., Guilford. To share a memory or leave condolences, visit

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