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John McKay

In Loving Memory

McKay, John

September 17, 1940 - March 26, 2024

John McKay, born September 17, 1940 in Glasgow Scotland, passed away peacefully in his sleep at his home in Webster Groves, Missouri, on March 26th. 

John is survived by his wife of 43 years Heather McKay, his three children Patricia (Terrell) Beckius, Cameron (Kate) McKay, Robin (Mathias) Muschal, and three Grandchildren Kaia Beckius, Ronan Beckius, and Macallan Muschal.

Born during WWII, John (Scotty) moved to Canada in his 20s and lived with his much loved Canadian cousins. His employer there, Corning, sent him to work in the United States where he was drafted and served in the United States Army 82nd Airborne Parachute regiment. 

After being honorably discharged, John attended and graduated from Cal State, Fullerton.  He was then recruited by the United States Government and proudly served as a Federal Narcotics Agent domestically in Los Angeles, Washington DC, and St Louis, and overseas in Lebanon, Turkey, and the Netherlands Antilles. His overseas posts involved liaison and undercover work in the Middle East and the Caribbean.

John followed his federal career by serving as international security manager for American Airlines.

After retiring he focused on family, delighting in the daily visits of his new grandson, Macallan.

He was much loved and will be greatly missed.

Funeral Arrangements for Friday April 12th are as follows: 

11:00 AM – Remembrance service at Annunciation Catholic Church, 12 West Glendale Road, Webster Groves, MO 63119

1:00 PM – Honors and Interment at Jefferson Barracks Cemetery 

2:30 – 5:00 PM – Reception at Cyrano’s Cafe, 603 East Lockwood Ave, Webster Groves, MO 63119

In lieu of flowers charitable donations may be made to BackStoppers Inc. or the AFNA foundation.





23 thoughts on “McKay, John”

  1. John was a really great guy and an excellent and captivating storyteller. He will be missed by all of us. Condolences go out to Heather and the entire family.
    Larry Furrer

  2. My deepest condolences to Heather and the entire McKay Family. Scottie replaced me in Beirut, Lebanon in 1974, and I had the opportunity to work with Scottie when he was back in the U.S. RIP my friend.

  3. So many memories during our time in Turkey and Stl. Scottie is with Walter ,in heaven ,telling stories. Condolences to Heather and McKay family . Michele Leamy and family

  4. I was lucky to live nextdoor to the McKays for many years. They became like family to us and we spent many holidays and family celebrations together. We could always count on John for an exciting story or two. He and Heather were fun to hang with. I will miss him and send my sincere sympathy to Heather, Cam and Robin. Love you guys.

  5. What an unforgettable personality your John was. His teasing words in a Scottish lilt still hang in the air. The stories, Middle Eastern dinners, his hosting parties in his kilts, the chiding/heartfelt relationship with Harry Popper (Frank’s dad), our delight when he brought his family to St. Louis, all are such fun/fond memories. We will hold dear his colorful stories and uplifting cheer always. Our hearts are with you, Heather, Cameron, Robin and family, whom he so adored!

  6. Lots of good memories when Scotty came to Los Angeles…got him his 6 inch 357 magnum revolver to shoot more accurately…his accent on the radio and more great memories. Rest in Peace Scotty.

  7. I remember when Scotty was captured and held by a militant group while serving as a BNDD agent in Beirut. It took a lot of back-channel work to get him released but he eventually was released unharmed. Scotty was a man of a million stories and every one of them was well worth hearing. May he rest in peace. My condolences to his family, friends, and loved ones.

  8. My condolences to Heather and the entire family. “Scottie” was truly one of the good guys. I didn’t know him well, but he was very respected and well-liked in the DEA community. May he R.I.P.

  9. I served under John (Scotty) in St. Louis. He supervised two shifts of a task force group of agents and local officers. Scotty was loved and respected, as he battled our management daily to ensure we had every tool we needed to investigate our cases. My family and I enjoyed New Years Eves with the McKays. Scotty, always well kilted, christened my girls with the nicknames we all laugh about today. I will miss talking to my true friend, and will always value our friendship, with all the McKays. We offer our sympathy to all the family and friends of John McKay.
    The Howell Family

  10. Sorry to see the passing of my friend “Scottie” McKay. We met in Paris circa 1983 attending an Interpol Conference when I was assigned by DEA to London and John was in Turkey. One evening, we decided to walk to the Eiffel Tower. On the way, we stopped in several assorted bistros for a Courvoisier. We finally made it to the Tower and began returning to our hotel but became a bit lost, so we hailed a cab. We paid about $25.00 and turned out we were 2 blocks to our hotel.

  11. Our most sincere condolences to the McKay family on the passing of Scotty. I have many great memories of time serving with Scotty in Los Angeles and later in retirement. Just one great agent and friend.

    Doug Kuehl Family

  12. Heather and Family….It was so sad to learn of Scotty’s passing peacefully at home with family. I so fondly recall our days together at American Airlines HQ Security as we often shared stories, laughs (and at times an off duty pint) of our respective days with the FBI/DEA. Scotty was well respected with our AA Security colleagues for his sense of humor, insight and advice in addressing secuirty challenges of the day. I will let our AA friends know of Scotty’s passing. He was and will be missed. May Scotty Rest in Peace. God Bless.

  13. Heather, my heart goes out to you. Your husband of 43 sounds like a truly wonderful man. You will surely miss him. You have children and grandchildren to help you through this, including baby Mcallen. (Sorry I got his name wrong.) Condolences to you and all your family. May his memory be a blessing.

  14. Heather and family, so sad to hear of Scotty’s passing. He has been a dear friend. I enjoyed working with him and receiving his cards after retirement. His nickname for me was Moneypenny.
    His best stories were the ones about his love for his family. He was happy and very proud of all of you.

  15. It is my deepest regrets for Heather and family. I know Scotty during our times at TWA and AA. He was always a gentleman. I can go on and on rememessing of all the good times we had together. When I saw this notification my heart dropped. I was going to call him today. My prayers are with him. May he R.I.P.

  16. Scotty & I joined BNDD in Los Angeles at the same time in 1972 and were in the same Basic Agent academy class. He used to joke that he just made the max age limit for joining, however his maturity and already worldly experience and personality made him one of those trainees you admired. You knew he had an exciting career ahead of him. We were fortunate to have been assigned to the L.A. office and worked on many investigations one might read about in novels.

    We became friends, he helped my wife Nancy & I celebrate our wedding and a year later, all of us were coincidently attending the Dept of State Foreign Service Institute for languages – Scotty for Arabic and us for Portuguese. He clearly had what was considered a ‘hard language’ to learn and we would often bemoan our study challenges (and successes) at each other’s apartments over a meal or some libation. His language instructors very much liked Scotty and thought it amusing to hear someone speak Arabic with a slight Scottish accent.

    He always had ‘war’ stories to tell but his time spent as a captive in Beirut was by far the most fascinating and scary. He would mostly brush off that experience as ‘another day at the office’, but how he handled himself professionally and personally through that ordeal was indicative of his inner-strength and spiritually.

    Scotty was never shy when proclaiming how much he loved his family, and how they kept him centered and focused. When given the opportunity, he was proud to explain what his children were accomplishing at various stages of their lives. He will be very much missed by many friends and colleagues. May he rest in peace. Heather and family remain in our prayers.

  17. I first met Scotty in 1975 in Beirut when Art Johnson and I were passing through on our way to Pakistan. The three of us have been fast friends since then. While stationed in Curaçao he convalesced from surgery at my house and then we were neighbors in Arlington, VA. There we many get togethers and dinners throughout the years as well as weddings, retirements and anniversaries. As always there was a “wee bit of the creature” shared.

    When I was dealing with some problems he flew out to help me through a hard time. That was the kind of man he was. In these past few years we spoke often sharing memories and talking about the road ahead.

    There are a few things I will always remember about Scotty. When weighing the pros and cons of the cost of a trip and I wanted to go cheap, he always said choose the best — treat yourself! Postcards from his many travels always included a literary quote most of which went over my head but were always a hoot to unravel and then signed with a phrase in Arabic.

    Art and I have a few stories about Scotty which we will write up to share with the family. Of course, they are always best told with a drop of “the creature”.

    Scotty was my dear friend. He was a great family man and a genuinely kind person. I will miss him always.

  18. Sorry to hear of my friend’s passing. We met in 1983 in Paris at an Interpol Conference when I was assigned to London with DEA and we shared several Courvoisiers while walking to view the Eiffel Tower one evening. A real gentlemen and friend.


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