Wayne Oliver McKenzie, 89, of Westernport, was guided by his angels through the gates of Heaven on August 27, 2023, while resting at Egle Nursing and Rehab Center. He now finds peace and refuge from his immeasurable struggle with dementia in the presence of God.
Born February 23, 1934, within his home in Westernport, MD to John B. McKenzie and Eva (Tanner) McKenzie, he was the youngest of nine children.
He was proceeded in death by his parents and siblings; Cliff, Hoot, Darby, Bunny, Hilda, Marg, Joyce, and Edda, as well as their spouses. He was also welcomed at the gates by his beloved daughter, Brenda Marie McKenzie.
Wayne married the love of his life and best friend, Norma Lee (Whitfield) McKenzie on March 12, 1960. He leaves for now, his cherished wife and children; his son, John E. McKenzie and wife Kelly of Frostburg; his daughter, Karen McIntyre and husband Thomas of Cumberland; as well as three granddaughters, Killian McIntyre, Megan McKenzie, and Lauren McKenzie; and one great-granddaughter, Lyla Hamilton. He is also survived by many wonderful nieces, nephews, great-nieces, great-nephews, and cousins.
Wayne attended school at Bruce High School until the 10th grade, when he left the books behind to help his family and gain his knowledge through life experiences and becoming an outdoorsman. He went into the military, serving in the US Army until he was honorably discharged. As a man of all trades, Wayne worked in Baltimore at a steel mill, then as a Bartender at “The Knuckle”, and eventually he found himself working as a supervisor in automatic finishing at Westvaco, where he later retired.
As a lifetime member of the Westernport American Legion, Wayne could always be found at Victory Post #155, looking busy and talking to his friends. He would cook breakfast for the morning patrons, run Bingos in the evenings, and clean firearms for military funerals. He was also a member of the Westernport Heritage Society where he donated his local findings. As well as an Associated member of the FOP and the Upper Potomac Rod & Gun Club.
Most of all Wayne enjoyed being outdoors. In the summers, he would tend to his vegetable garden and can his beans and pepper jellies. He would go out fishing and hunting any time he got the chance. He’d go for drives and walks through the woods to find mushrooms and ramps. Back at home, he would work in his woodshop making hanging baskets, lounge chairs, benches, and decorative cut outs. In the kitchen, he would make delicious soups, handmade rolls and noodles, and his famous peanut butter fudge. In the winters, he would be shoveling the walk in just a t-shirt. Sitting on the porch watching the hummingbirds was his relaxing spot, where he would wave to every car that drove past. He loved traveling with his family and experiencing new places. Wayne could tell you stories about every place he’d ever been and was a great mentor for so many with all his wisdom.
A special thank you to the staff at Egle Nursing and Rehab Center for the amazing care provided to Wayne in his last years. And an immense thank you to Reverand Eric Gauchat, OFM Cap., and Deacon Harold Bradley for being by Wayne and Norma’s side through his toughest moments.
Family and friends will be received at the Boal Funeral Home, Westernport for a memorial gathering on Friday September 8, 2023 from 6 to 8 p.m. A Memorial Mass of Christian Burial will take place on Saturday, September 9, 2023 at the Divine Mercy Parish-St. Peter Catholic Church, Westernport at 10:00 a.m.
He will be laid to rest at St. Peter’s Cemetery, followed by a bereavement lunch.