Took great pride in his military service
WAKEFIELD — Harold P. “Butch” McKenna, Jr. age 77, of Wakefield, formerly of Malden, died Wednesday, January 25 at his residence.
Born in Stoneham on October 25, 1945 he was the son of the late Harold P. and Mary (Wilson) McKenna.
Known to all as “Butch,” he took great pride in his military service, serving as an aircraft mechanic from 1965-1969 with the United States Air Force and a full-time technician and crew chief from 1976-2000 with the New Hampshire Air National Guard. He was a veteran of Vietnam and Desert Shield.
Butch was a lover of all things planes, trains and automobiles. His car was immaculately cleaned and tuned, a practice that led to his exquisite attention to detail with the aircraft he was responsible for maintaining as a technical sergeant. Butch was instantly recognizable for his “fluffed and buffed” haircuts and his well-manicured mustache. The artwork on the front fuselage of his KC-135 Refueler – with the phrase “Fluffed & Buffed” prominently displayed – was once featured in a book about Air Force nose art.
Born and raised in Malden, he was a 1963 graduate of Malden High School. He met Kathleen during those high school years at Brigham’s in Malden, establishing a lifelong sweet tooth for ice cream. They forged lifelong friendships on Church Street in his early years and in their High Street home where they raised their children. In 2003 the McKenna’s downsized to Wakefield where Butch enjoyed spending beautiful afternoons on the porch overlooking Lake Quannapowitt. There are countless memories of fun gatherings at the McKenna Family homes shared by their large circle of family and friends.
Butch was the husband of Kathleen (Sheehan), with whom he shared 55 years of marriage. He was the proud father of Kevin McKenna of Malden, Tracey Coyne and her husband Brian of Wakefield, Jamie McKenna and his wife Kara of Stow, Matthew McKenna and his wife Kerry Whelan of Braintree, and the late Mary Elizabeth McKenna. He is also survived by his daughter-in-law, Joanne McKenna of Plaistow, NH. He was “Bubba” to Shamus and Norah Coyne and Brady, Kasey, Connor, Kate, Nolan and Emmet McKenna. He was the brother-in-law of John “Jack” Sheehan and his late wife Brenda Wiksten and the late James, Barbara, and Donna Sheehan. He is also survived by many nieces, nephews, and extended family; as well as his best friend, John Hubbard of Stoneham.
His funeral Mass will be celebrated in St. Joseph Church, 173 Albion St., Wakefield on Monday, January 30 at 11:30 a.m. Visitation for relatives and friends will be held at the McDonald Funeral Home, 19 Yale Ave., Wakefield on Sunday, January 29 from 1-4 p.m. Interment, Forest Dale Cemetery, Malden.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Bread of Life, 214 Commercial St., Suite 209, Malden, MA 02148 (http://www.breadoflifemalden.org/donate) or to Massachusetts Fallen Heroes, (https://www.massfallenheroes.org/)