William  McDow

William Douglas McDow

1937 - 2019

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Obituary of William Douglas McDow

William “Bill” McDow passed away at home on April 26, 2019, surrounded by family, after a battle with cancer. He was 81. Bill was born November 25, 1937 in Susanville, California to Willa Ramser and Douglas McDow.


Bill moved several times in his early years living with his Ramser grandparents in Chester, California before attending military school in Southern California in 1944. He moved to Santa Cruz in 1945 and attended Gault Elementary School starting in second grade. His time in Santa Cruz was short lived as he moved with is mother and stepfather, Charles Jones, to Hawaii in 1946 and then to Midway Island the following year. Bill landed back in Santa Cruz in 1950 where he attended Branciforte Junior High and then Santa Cruz High School, graduating in 1956. Starting in 1955, Bill served with the California National Guard for seven years.


After graduating from high school, Bill started a 30-year career with Pacific Bell, retiring in 1986. Bill was a hard-working man and retiring before the age of 50 left him with idle hands, so he started his own business, McDow Electric, in 1987. He ran the company until just a few years ago when it was taken over by his two sons, Kevin and Richard.


Bill was a dedicated family man, working hard to provide a good life for his family.

When he wasn’t working, Bill enjoyed taking yearly fishing trips to Alaska, hunting elk in Montana and vacationing at his second home in San Sebastian, Mexico. He was a member of the Santa Cruz Elks Club where he liked to play cards and BS with his buddies. Bill was also a member of the Native Sons of the Golden West.


He is survived by his wife of almost 60 years (July 18, 1959), Jacqueline Vera McDow, his two sons Richard (Kerry) of Aptos and Kevin (Jessica) of Soquel, his daughter Megan (Archie) of Moss Beach, his brother Devlin Jones (Karsen) of Soquel and grandchildren Kristie, David, Evan and Samantha. He was preceded in death by his son Patrick McDow and his brother Charles Jones II.


A memorial service will be held on July 18, 2019 at 10:00 a.m. at Pacific Gardens Chapel, 1050 Cayuga St., Santa Cruz. In lieu of flowers, please donate in Bill’s name to Hospice of Santa Cruz, 940 Disc Dr., Scotts Valley, California 95066.

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Memorial Service

10:00 am - 11:00 am
Thursday, July 18, 2019
Benito & Azzaro Pacific Gardens Chapel
1050 Cayuga St
Santa Cruz, California, United States
831 423-5721