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SSGT Bertha <I>Baxley</I> McDonald

SSGT Bertha Baxley McDonald

Roberdell, Richmond County, North Carolina, USA
Death 15 Oct 1983 (aged 78)
Wichita Falls, Wichita County, Texas, USA
Burial Roberdell, Richmond County, North Carolina, USA
Memorial ID 38432860 · View Source
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Youngest child and only daughter of Cornelia Ann Terry and Thomas Baxter Baxley of Roberdell, Richmond County, North Carolina. Second wife of Marion Jackson "Mack" McDonald of Iowa Park, Wichita County, Texas. She had five older brothers.

In 1925, Bertha graduated from East Carolina University in Greenville, NC, a school for training teachers. In the 1930 US Federal Census, she was living with her parents in Roberdell and working as a school teacher. Thomas and Cornelia passed away in 1936 and 1938, respectively. In 1940, Bertha was sharing her parents' home with her young nephew, William Benson Baxley, and his wife Ruth. She was a school teacher in the public school system.

In 1943 at age 37, Bertha enlisted at Fort Bragg NC into the Women's Army Corps (WAC) as a private for the duration of World War II. Marital status was single with no dependents. She was trained at what is now called an air traffic controller and was stationed in several places, including near Kearney, Nebraska, in Oklahoma and at Sheppard AFB near Wichita Falls, Texas.

A fellow air traffic controller, Bob McDonald, took Bertha home for a visit to Wichita Falls to meet his widowed father (and her future husband), Marion Jackson "Mack" McDonald. Bertha and Mack married in 1945 and lived in Iowa Park, which is west of Wichita Falls, after her discharge from the military the same year.

Bertha was nearer the age of Mack's children than him. They were both high school history teachers, although he worked as a farmer and warehouseman in his younger years. In Texas, Bertha taught school and attended school athletic events. The high school football team once presented her with an autographed football after winning a special championship game. She also taught Sunday School in the Methodist church.

She enjoyed her life in Texas with Mack and his adult children (John Merle, Sidney Fritz, Marion Maurine, Chloetilde "Chloe" and Wilson Glenn "Bob" McDonald). Mack passed away on Christmas Eve in 1955 at age 83. Bertha never remarried. She passed away on her husband's birthday, 15 October, almost 28 years after his death. Her last residence was near Sheppard AFB.

Bertha is buried in the Baxley family plot at Bear Branch Cemetery in Roberdell, North Carolina, with her parents.

Mack is interred with his first wife, Kate Mae Fritz, at Live Oak Cemetery in Dublin, Erath County, Texas.

Bio by cousin JTerry ღ with assistance from Bertha's niece, Norma Gwen Baxley Garris


A memory shared in 2016:
"Bertha Baxley McDonald was my American History teacher in Iowa Park, Texas in 1965, when I was a senior. She really cared about her students."

Thank you Barbara Triggs


Family Members






  • Created by: JTerry ღ
  • Added: 17 Jun 2009
  • Find A Grave Memorial 38432860
  • Find A Grave, database and images ( : accessed ), memorial page for SSGT Bertha Baxley McDonald (27 Jun 1905–15 Oct 1983), Find A Grave Memorial no. 38432860, citing Bear Branch Cemetery, Roberdell, Richmond County, North Carolina, USA ; Maintained by JTerry ღ (contributor 47030398) .