Thomas Carl McKay, 60, of Brookline NH, died Sunday, May 2, 2021 at Southern New Hampshire Medical Center, Nashua NH.
Thomas was born on November 8, 1960 in Cooperstown ND and was the third of four children born to Willis and Marlys (Workman) McKay of Pickert ND in Steele County. He attended school at Finley ND graduating from Finley-Sharon High School with honors in 1979. Thomas attended the University of North Dakota in Grand Forks ND, receiving a Bachelor of Science Chemical Engineering in 1983 and Master of Science Chemical Engineering in 1986.
On September 2, 1982, Thomas was married to Tami Kaye Lerol of Finley ND in the Finley Lutheran Church, Finley ND. Three children were born of this union: Brant Thomas Andrew on January 25, 1988, Cade Ronald Neil on November 25, 1989 and Drake Wallace Earl on June 4, 1991. The couple resided in Grand Forks ND, Montebello and Diamond Bar CA, and Pepperell MA before residing in Brookline NH since 2000.
Thomas was a Contamination Control Engineer, Test and Evaluation IPT Lead for APKWS SDD/LRIP, Test/Systems Engineer for THAAD, Project Technical Lead for APKWS and APKWS Portfolio Engineering Lead. His space shuttle payload and defense career spanned Rockwell International, Loral Infrared and Imaging Systems, Lockheed Martin and BAE Systems.
Thomas was an active member of Christ the King Lutheran Church, Nashua NH where he served on Congregation Council, taught Confirmation and led Stewardship and Outreach Ministry teams. Thomas had a reserved demeanor that belied brilliance, quick wit, deep faith and a generous heart. He was an accomplished engineer, receiving several Chairman’s awards, mentored dozens of engineers with great influence, and traveled the world in support of APKWS and BAE Systems. He was our ‘rocket man’.
Thomas is survived by his wife, Tami; three sons: Brant McKay of Brookline NH, Cade McKay of Brookline NH, Drake McKay of Portland OR; one grandson, Elias McKay of Peterborough and Brookline NH; his mother, Marlys McKay of Fargo ND; three brothers: Timothy (Cindy) McKay of Minot ND, Richard (Mary) McKay of Portland OR, and Randy McKay of Hatton ND; his father in law, Ronald (Connie) Lerol of Finley ND; two brothers in law: Kurt (Sarah) Lerol of Finley ND, and Kraig (Jackee) Lerol of Portland ND; five nephews and nieces: Austin McKay, Jim (Sarah) McKay, Laura McKay, Matthew (Katie) Welsch and Megan Welsch Larson; great nieces, great nephews, and cousins.
He was preceded in death by his father, Willis McKay.
The family requests no flowers be sent; memorials preferred to donor’s choice.
Memorial Service: 1:00pm Friday, May 14, 2021 at Cathedral of the Pines in Rindge NH.
Family Service: Baker Funeral Home, Mayville ND.
Burial: Silent Hill Cemetery, Aneta ND.