In Loving Memory of Eugene Gerald “Mac” McClees: 1924-2023


Eugene Gerald “Mac” McClees, age 99, of Centralia, Washington, passed away on Wednesday, May 24, 2023. 

Mac was born to John and Ethel McClees on May 22, 1924, in Nevada, Iowa. He had three siblings: Harold, Rosemarie and Marla. Mac was reared in Iowa and Nebraska until the age of 12, and in 1936, he moved to Kelso, Washington. He graduated from Kelso High School in 1942. That same year, Mac joined the U.S. Army and served in the South Pacific as a radio and radar operator. His honors included the Asiatic Pacific Service Medal, Victory Medal, Philippine Liberation Medal, and two bronze service stars. He was honorably discharged on Jan. 18, 1946. After his military service, he started his education at Lower Columbia College to study pre-pharmacy, then moved on to the University of Utah School of Pharmacy in Salt Lake City, Utah, graduating in 1954. 

On June 17, 1950, Mac married Mabel Evelyn Monk. They had three children: John, David and Julie. Mabel preceded him in death on Feb. 22, 2000. He later married Charalene Bayer on Sept. 8, 2001. 

Mac served as a pharmacist in Chehalis and Centralia, Washington, for over 50 years. He was the owner and operator of George Sears Drugs in Chehalis and Garrison’s Rexall Pharmacy in Centralia. He worked for the Fred Meyer pharmacy in Yard Birds and for Hall’s Drug in Centralia. In addition, Eugene owned Sharon Care Center in Centralia. He worked as a relief pharmacist until he was 80 years old. 

Eugene was a charter member of the Centralia Church of the Nazarene and a member of the Kiwanis. He traveled all over the United States and Mexico, and also took a trip to the Holy Land.

Eugene was preceded in death by his father John Harold McClees, his mother Ethel Heldenbrand McClees, his brother Harold McClees, his sister Rosemarie McClees Tharldson, and his wife Mabel Evelyn McClees.

Eugene is survived by his wife, Charalene Bayer McClees; his sister Marla McClees Inman; his children, John McClees (Linda), David McClees (Becky) and Julie McClees Duke (Bob); his 11 grandchildren; his 17 great-grandchildren; one great-great-grandchild, and several nieces and nephews.  The family would like to thank Assured Home Health and Hospice for all of their care of Mac in his final days. There will be a celebration of life from 2 to 4 p.m. on June 14, 2023, at Centralia Church of the Nazarene, 1119 W. First St., Centralia, Washington, 98531. Fond memories and expressions of sympathy may be shared at for the McClees family.