Milton Lauchlin “Locke” MacDonald ’52

Milton Lauchlin “Locke” MacDonald, 91, died January 29, 2022, surrounded by his family at his home in Scotia Village in Laurinburg.

He was born March 29, 1930, to Kenneth Angus (K.A.) and Ruth MacDonald in Hope Mills, where he lived until age five, when his father became superintendent of Hoke County Schools, and the family moved to Raeford. He grew up in Raeford and attended Davidson College and served in the National Guard until the Korean War, when he and a buddy flipped a coin to decide whether both should join the U.S. Navy or the U.S. Army. The Navy won, and he worked in the weather service, stationed in Panama, where he met the recently widowed Charlotte Ewald Miles. After her father-in-law, an admiral, packed him off on a plane to a new duty station in Norfolk, he nonetheless persisted in a courtship that ultimately led to a 50-year marriage and four children. In the meantime, he returned to Davidson and completed his degree. The couple moved back to Raeford, where he worked at Burlington Industries as planning manager. Later, while working as a land surveyor and a drafting teacher at Hoke High School, he earned a master’s degree in school administration. He became assistant principal, then principal of Hoke High.

He was a keeper of history—his family’s, his church’s and the community’s. He loved research and published two books, wrote articles and kept records over the course of decades.

After Charlotte died in 2007, he married Betty Herring, and the two of them moved to Scotia Village, where she died in 2020.

He had a lifelong love of gardening, and at Scotia Village, he took over the work of a former resident and turned the gardens into a showplace of giant elephant ears, thousands of flowers, and rock-lined paths. He was happy to find fellow bridge enthusiasts in his many friends at Scotia.

Always ready for an adventure, in 2018, he and his children visited Panama to retrace the steps of his romance with their mother. In 2019, they traveled to Scotland and stood together at the spot where their ancestors embarked for America. 

He was elder emeritus at Raeford Presbyterian Church where he attended and served most of his life. He was upright, respectful of all, and known for his humor.

He is survived by four children, Ken MacDonald and his wife Holly of Southern Pines, John MacDonald and his wife Kathy of Winston Salem, Anne MacDonald of Raeford, and Alan MacDonald of Weaverville; grandchildren, Ben MacDonald, Leighanne Beidleman, John MacDonald, Katie Myer, Joey D’Annunzio, John D’Annunzio, Charlotte Samuelson, James MacDonald, Samuel MacDonald and Daniel MacDonald; great-grandchildren, Hollyanne, Kenneth, Annalise, Lincoln, Grant, Addison, Aidan, Ender, Archer, and Blue; and a sister, Katherine Ingram and her husband Jim of Fishers Island, New York.

A graveside service will be held Wednesday at 1 p.m. at Raeford Cemetery with Dr. Maureen Paterson officiating.

Memorial contributions may be made to Raeford Presbyterian Church, The Raeford-Hoke Museum or Liberty Hospice, Raeford. 

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