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Keith McDonald

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Signed 18 Dec 2015 | 116688 contributions | 4764 thank-yous
GySgt Keith A. McDonald
Born 1950s.
Ancestors ancestors
[sibling(s) unknown]
[children unknown]
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Profile last modified | Created 17 Dec 2015
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Keith McDonald is a Military Veteran.
Served in the United States Marines 1975-1995 retiring as a Gunnery Sergeant
Served in Beirut, Desert Storm and Somalia

Keith was born on 1 Jul 1957 in Robinson, Crawford County, Illinois. His family moved to North Riverside, Cook County, Illinois when he was 2. Attending public schools, he graduated from Riverside-Brookfield High School in 1975. Using military incentives, earned Associates, Bachelor of Science in Computer Science and Masters in Software Engineering from National University in San Diego, California.[1]

Military Service

Keith enlisted in the US Marine Corps under the delayed entry program while in his senior year of high school. He reported to MCRD San Diego for recruit training on 26 Jun 1975.[1]

He served with the 2d Battalion and 3rd Battalion, 9th Marines 3rd Marine Division on Camp Schwab, Okinawa for 1 year with 1 float to Japan and the Philippines, then spent 7 years in the 2d Battalion, 6th Marines, 2d Marine Division on Camp Lejeune, NC with 2 floats to the Mediterranean and 2 tours in Beirut as part of the Multi National peacekeeping force. The first tour was scheduled, the second tour was as part of the replacement force after the bombing of the BLT Headquarters building in 1983, the same building where he was quarterd just months before.

His next duty assignment again lasted 7 years with Headquarters Company, Headquarters Battalion, 1st Marine Division on Camp Pendleton, Ca. Initially he remained in the 03xx infantry MOS, but serving with the HQ staff in training and education billets. in 1987 after completing a Masters Degree in Software Engineering, he changed his MOS to the 40xx computer field and was assigned to the Information Systems Management Office handling both individual computers and the emerging field of PC networking. In 1990 he deployed with advance elements of the Division and helped established the first in country USMC computer network during Operation Desert Shield/Desert Storm.

His last tour of duty was with MCCTA, MCB Quantico VA, again assigned to the section that handled computers and networking. From here he made a short deployment to Somalia as part of a detachment that provided mainframe support to units stationed there.

He retired on 30 Jul 1995 after 20 years of service, attaining the rank of Gunnery Sergeant.

Military Timeline

  • 1974 - enlisted under Delayed Entry Program, finish high school, but committed to service
  • 26 Jun 1975 - Report to MCRD San Diego for recruit training, assigned to Platoon 1073
  • Dec 1975 - reported to Camp Pendleton, California for Infantry Training School
  • Jan 1976 - assigned as rifleman to 2nd Bn, 9th Marines, 3rd Marine Division at Camp Schwab, Okinawa. Unit deployed afloat to Japan and the Philippines.
  • Sep 1976 - assigned to 3rd Bn, 9th Marines for duty with Camp Guard unit, Camp Schwab
  • Feb 1977 - Assigned as a grenadier to Golf Co, 2nd Bn, 6th Marines, 2nd Marine Division, Camp Lejeune NC, deployed on 1st and 2nd Med Cruise
  • assigned as platoon sergeant to Fox Co, 2nd Bn, 6th Marines due to force restructuring
  • assigned as training and education NCO to Echo Co, 2nd Bn, 6th Marines, deployed on 3rd Med Crusie
  • assigned as S-3, Assistant Operations Chief to H&S Co, 2nd Bn, 6th Marines, deployed on 4th Med Cruise to Beirut Lebanon
  • assigned to Wpns Co, 2nd Bn, 6th Marines as Dragon Section Leader, deployed to Beirut Lebanon as part of the replacement force after the bombing of the BLT Hqtrs in 1983
  • 1984 transferred to Hq Bn 1st Marine Division at Camp Pendleton, Ca
  • assignments as division education nco, hq bn training nco, division computer programming chief
  • 1992 transferred to MCCTA, Quantico Va for duty with the marine corps networking section and the hq bn networking chief
  • 1993 deployed briefy to Somalia
  • 30 Jun 1995 retired from active duty

Military Decorations

His awards include the Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal with gold star, Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal with 3 gold stars, Navy Combat Action Ribbon. Joint Meritorious Unit Award, Navy Unit Commendation with bronze star, Navy Meritorious Unit Commendation, Marine Good Conduct Medal with silver star, Marine Corps Expeditionary Medal with bronze star, National Defense Service Medal, Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal with bronze star, Southwest Asia Service Medal with 2 bronze stars, Sea Service Deployment Ribbon with 4 bronze stars, Kuwait Liberation Medal (Kuwait) and Kuwait Liberation Medal (Saudi Arabia)

Civilian Life

After leaving the Marine Corps, he worked for several companies, all of them as a consultant in the computer networking and directory services field.

Member of the National Society of the Sons of the American Revolution, West Virginia Society, General Adam Stephens Chapter.

Member of the Sports Car Club of America and races a Formula Enterprises car. (open wheel, open cockpit)


  1. 1.0 1.1 Riverside News
  • First-hand information. Entered by Keith McDonald at registration.

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DNA Connections
It may be possible to confirm family relationships by comparing test results with Keith or other carriers of his ancestors' Y-chromosome or mitochondrial DNA. Y-chromosome DNA test-takers in his direct paternal line on WikiTree: Mitochondrial DNA test-takers in the direct maternal line:
  • Keith McDonald: Family Tree DNA mtDNA Test Full Sequence, haplogroup H5e1a, FTDNA kit #188279
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Comments: 22

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Hi Keith,

Just checking in to make sure you are OK as I have not seen you on WikiTree for a while. Let me know if I can help in any way..

posted by Robin Lee
Thank you for your service, here and to our country!
Hi, Keith

The Ambassadors project has been reorganizing and is looking for those who have a membership at a genealogical society, to help in spreading the word about WikiTree.

We're working on ways to improve how WikiTree connects and interacts with genealogical and local history societies. This is the kind of thing we want to do:

  • Liaise with societies: set up your local society with a free-space page and some WikiTree materials as part of a package.
  • Use social media to promote what societies are offering on WikiTree.
  • Encourage bloggers to blog about societies and the resources available to them on WikiTree.

Are you interested in participating in some way? Do you have some ideas to share?

Azure Rae ~ co-Leader of Ambassadors Project

posted by Azure Robinson
Hey there, going further with Harry Woodall's service I did find YMS-68 listed here

so the ship did exist but beyond that I don't know.

Keith I tried to make this correction "change Category: World War II, United States Navy to Category: USS Greer (DD-145), United States Navy, World War II " on the page for Harry Woodall but could not get it to work. Would very much appreciate your expertise! THANKS.
Good to see another Marine on WT. ~~~
posted by Eddie Pike
Hello Cousin Keith

We appear to be 20th cousins five times removed both being uncertain descendants of Henry (de Vere) de Drayton. My Fitzgeralds are a well connected lot of unknown certainty. Always happy to have a new cousin. Even of the uncertain, distant variety. Cheers, Gina

posted by A Nony Mouse Moffett
Hi, Keith. I noticed your name on my Gedmatch "One-to-Many" page. You and I have a 10.3-cM match on chromosome 1 (supposedly 5.2 generations to MRCA). No match to your mother or to Robert Stanley McDonald or Jason McDonald. It's not much of a match, but the match could be "real". You and I don't show a relationship in WikiTree yet, but it's something to look for.  :-)
posted by Ellen Smith

All the work on the categorization stuff-I don't think I can tell you often enough just how amazing you are. Thanks for stepping up and making sure that we get M&W stuff hammered out and corrected. You are cream of the crop here on the 'tree.

Thank you, Keith!

posted by Abby (Brown) Glann