David F. Mackie Dies
The longtime horseman was 80.
August 17, 2017
David French Mackie, a longtime horseman who with his wife, Susan, raced 1998 All American Futurity (G1) winner Falling In Loveagain, died on August 14. He was 80.
With strong family and medical support, Mackie survived a struggle with cancer that lasted nearly 11 years. He was born in Kansas City on April 13, 1937, the son of David Charles Mackie and Virginia French Mackie. He grew up in Kansas City, graduated valedictorian of his class at Pembroke-Country Day school and then from Yale College, cum laude, in 1959.
Upon his graduation, Mackie was commissioned an officer in the U.S. Navy where he served on active duty until the fall of 1961. He looked back on the influence he received from his years in the Navy with great pride and satisfaction.
After his military service, Mackie graduated from Yale Law School, cum laude, in 1964. He joined the San Francisco law firm Brobeck, Phleger and Harrison, became a member of the Bar of California, and began a legal and business career in the Federal administrative law and public utility business.
In 1970, at the invitation of Travis Petty, his best and most highly respected corporate mentor, Mackie joined the executive ranks of the El Paso Natural Gas Company in El Paso and then in Houston. He retired from The El Paso Company as Senior Vice President and General Counsel in 1983. In 1984, Mackie joined the management of Transco Energy Company. He retired from Transco as President and COO of Transco Gas Company in 1992.
Mackie then began a sccessful career as an independent consultant and venture capital investor in the U.S. and Canada. He advised Shell Oil, Mobil Oil, Pan Energy, Merrill, Lynch and Pacific Gas & Electric. His finest achievement was the founding of AltaGas Ltd in Calgary, Alberta in 1994 with his longtime friend and most highly respected business associate David W. Cornhill. Their company has grown into an energy business with an enterprise value of about C$10 Billion on the Toronto Stock Exchange.
In 1962, David married Mary Lamora Harrison of Honolulu and they adopted three children, Ashley (a loyal and loving daughter to this day), Ian and Blair. In 1971, David married Stephanie Smith of Houston. She brought two childrenl, Charles and Katherine, into the marriage, and then in 1972 they had a son David Smith Mackie.
Then at the Transco Energy Company David set his eyes on the love of his life Susan Kemp Chism. They were married in the bluebonnets of their beloved Deer Creek Farm in Brenham on April 22, 1989, after a long friendship in a world with few women in the corporate executive offices. Their close friend, the late Suzanne Nelms of Houston, took credit for convincing Chairman of the Board Jack Bowen that their marriage was fully appropriate in this day and age.
Through this marriage, Mackie acquired two very special daughters, Sarah Chism Barr and Emily Chism Barker, M.D., and he was deeply involved in their upbringing and the people they have become. Now there are six grandchildren: Jack and Patrick Barr of College Station, and Lily, Caroline, Colin and Madeleine Barker.
David and Susan Mackie lived a rich and very full life together in Houston, Brenham, Santa Fe, Ruidoso, Corona del Mar, and New York City. One of the highlights of their lives was winning the All American Futurity in Ruidoso with Falling In Loveagain. In recent years, Mackie and his longtime friend Will Farish won several Grade 1 Thoroughbred stakes with 2015 champion older horse Honor Code.
The Mackies acknowledge several close friends of long standing: Ray Clevenger of Washington, D.C., John Ducato of Sedona, Jack Brooks of Oklahoma City (the trainer of Falling In Loveagain), Scott Wells of Oklahoma City, Rick Gordon of Houston and the late Frank Nelms of Houston.
Friends are invited to gather and share remembrances of Mackie with the family from 5:30-7:30 p.m. on Tuesday, August 22, at the River Oaks Country Club, 1600 River Oaks Blvd. in Houston.
The family will gather for a private funeral service at a later date.
In lieu of the customary remembrances, the family requests that friends consider making a memorial contribution in honor of David to the Houston Methodist Hospital's Oncology Partners or DeBakey Cardiology Associates.
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