Make us your home page

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Vicki McDonald, New Port Richey city clerk, dies of cancer

NEW PORT RICHEY — Victoria "Vicki" McDonald, who served energetically as city clerk for eight years, died Wednesday (June 10, 2009) after a yearlong bout with a rare form of cancer. She was 72.

Mrs. McDonald's colleagues say she tackled her duties of keeping records and minutes with conscientiousness, attentiveness and pep.

"She was fiery and feisty," said Caprena Latimore, the city's redevelopment manager and Mrs. McDonald's close friend. "She was a get-it-done kind of person."

Dan Tipton, who was mayor between 2004 and 2007, remembers Mrs. McDonald being a friendly first face at City Hall when he first ran for mayor.

"She treated me very well," he said. "That's how she was all the time."

She was born in 1937 and raised in Bound Brook, N.J. After attending Trenton State Teachers College, Rutgers and Syracuse University, she became a municipal clerk and administrator in Hillsborough Township, N.J., and Redington Beach and Belleair Beach.

Since 1950 Mrs. McDonald had frequented the Tampa Bay area to visit her parents in St. Petersburg. She and her husband, Thomas, moved to New Port Richey nine years ago, about the same time she started working for the city.

A year ago, doctors told Mrs. McDonald she had an aggressive form of cancer that left her with two or three months to live. She had five operations, radiation and chemotherapy, but they could not contain the cancer. She retired in April 2008.

"She enjoyed her work — that's why she stayed working," husband Thomas McDonald said. "She just didn't think, with the amount of pain she was in, that she could do the job right."

Even as her illness advanced, acting city manager Jeff Sutton said he never saw Mrs. McDonald down or depressed.

Mrs. McDonald loved working as a city clerk, which was all she had ever done, and she never desired to retire, Latimore said.

"If she hadn't gotten sick, she would still be working at the city now," Tipton said.

Mrs. McDonald is survived by her husband Thomas, their four children and seven grandchildren.

Last year, her 12-year-old grandson had a class exercise in which all the students were asked what they would do with $200. He said he would go to the airport and fly down to stay with his grandma.

Isaac Arnsdorf can be reached at [email protected] or (727) 869-6232.

Vicki McDonald, New Port Richey city clerk, dies of cancer 06/12/09 [Last modified: Friday, June 12, 2009 10:45pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Mother's testimony about toddler's death brings judge to tears


    TAMPA — Nayashia Williams woke up early on May 7, 2014, to the sound of her daughter calling for her. It was the last time the young mother's mornings would begin with a summons from Myla Presley, who couldn't yet climb over the mesh fencing around the playpen she used as a bed.

    Deandre Gilmore looks towards the gallery Tuesday in a Tampa courtroom. Gilmore is accused of killing the 19 month-old daughter of his girlfriend in 2014. He said the child fell while he was giving her a bath. [CHRIS URSO   |   Times]
  2. Speakers: Getting tough can't be only response to teen car thefts


    ST. PETERSBURG — Bob Dillinger remembers coming to Pinellas County as a legal intern in 1975. There were five major poverty zones in St. Petersburg.

  3. Internal White House documents allege manufacturing decline increases abortions, infertility and spousal abuse


    White House officials working on trade policy were alarmed last month when a top adviser to President Donald Trump circulated a two-page document that alleged a weakened manufacturing sector leads to an increase in abortion, spousal abuse, divorce and infertility, two people familiar with the matter told the …

  4. Black entrepreneur says city stiffing him on project after he endorsed Rick Baker


    ST. PETERSBURG — A prominent African-American resident says his endorsement of mayoral candidate Rick Baker has led city officials to freeze him out of a major construction project along the historic "Deuces" stretch of 22nd Street S.