Huntington – Steven Grant McDonald, 68, passed away early Saturday morning. He was born February 18, 1955 in Dragerton, Utah, to Grant and Dora (Anderson) McDonald of Sunnyside and married Gayle Black from Huntington, 48 years ago, on September 27, 1975.
Steve was raised in Sunnyside with his brother Mark and 2 of his 4 sisters. Steve started working at 16, tearing down the Dragerton Hospital. By 18 he was working for Kaiser Steel in the Sunnyside Mine. It was during this time he meet Gayle and started spending time in Emery County. In 1975, Neldon Sitterud offered him a position with Peabody Coal. He camped in a tent up Huntington Canyon for a few weeks until he could get a single wide trailer moved into town. Steve & Gayle lived there for 11 years before moving into their new home. There they raised 2 girls and had many grand adventures.
In 1984 Steve was inside Wilberg Mine when it caught fire. He recounted later that after waiting for power to be reestablished for over 45 minutes, he finally was able to call out and ask for an ETA. He was told “the mine is on fire, get out if you can.” All but 1 of his crew made it out. He later helped carry out many of his closest friends.
Steve had a brilliant mind and was really good with numbers. He was able to retire at age 45 using some tricks with his stock investments. Gayle continued to work so Steve tried his hand at being a “Martha Stewart.” Some of his recipes were amazing. He helped David and Jade with many home projects and even provided daycare when Alex was young. His proudest moment was sitting on the front row at Emery High this last May, watching his grandson give the Valedictorian speech. He told everyone that would listen, “I knew he would get it; he's the smartest kid I have ever known.”
Steve and Gayle lost their daughter Jera in 2001 and then Gayle passed in 2017. He told everyone that Gayle made the big decisions and she was picking out their next home. He was just waiting till she had it ready.
Steve was survived by his daughter Jade (David) Frederick of Huntington, grandson Alexander Frederick of Huntington, brother Mark (Shirley) McDonald of Sunnyside, sisters Sharon Weeks of Riverton & Dixie Tawzer of Arizona, and Gayle’s large family that accepted him as their own.
He was preceded in Death by his spouse Gayle Black McDonald, his daughter Jera Lynn McDonald, both his parents Grant and Dora McDonald, sisters Roxie (Wade) Gagel, Leta Berd, and brother in laws Gene Weeks & Lynn Tawzer.
Graveside services will be held Friday, October 6th at 1:00pm at the Huntington City Cemetery under the direction of Fausett Mortuary. We will all miss his stories and would appreciate any you are willing to share.
To leave condolences, please visit www.fausettmortuary.com