Mary McIntosh McCoy

Jan 27, 1952 – Feb 5, 2017

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Mary McIntosh McCoy


“Whatever you can do or dream you can, begin it. Boldness has genius, power, and magic in it.”

-- Geothe


Mary left us peacefully on February 5, 2017 at age 65 after experiencing complications from breast cancer. That one sentence does not convey anything about the life Mary lived or who she was.


Born in Lewiston, Idaho on January 27, 1952, Mary was the first in a family of nine children. Mary always took charge, although she knew how both to delegate and to stand back and let others lead. Throughout her life, Mary loved to teach and mentor others. Her life-long passions were language, gardening, music and people.


In high school and college, Mary sang in choir and played on the volleyball team to round out her academic studies. Later, she sang with the Boeing Choir. Mary excelled in college debate, having practiced for years on her siblings. She also wrote poetry and was editor of Queen Anne High School’s literary magazine, Paw Prints. A proud Grizzly, she graduated in 1970. Mary loved traditional Scottish music, particularly bagpipes.


In 1969, she traveled to Europe for the first time with the People-to-People Student Ambassador program. The trip featured home stays in several countries and included travel to (then) East Berlin. Mary remembered that she was in Europe when the United States landed on the moon in July 1969. When people learned she was an American, they congratulated her on the moon landing as if it were her personal accomplishment! She loved that. Mary toured Europe again with the Seattle University choir and visited a number of times throughout her life.


After graduating from Seattle University (’74), Mary taught English at Kennedy High School for five years. She never lost her love of language and literature. Mary read voraciously and enjoyed participating in her book club. She was always ready to make or receive a book recommendation.

 In 1979, Mary started a 35-year career with The Boeing Company. Mary worked in materiel management and was an early proponent of and participant in lean and agile supply chain management. While working full time, Mary completed the Executive Master in Business Administration at the Foster School of Business, University of Washington (’01). She had the opportunity to use her management skills in assignments in Australia and Charleston, South Carolina. Her positions required worldwide travel, including India, Asia and Europe. Mary thoroughly enjoyed traveling the world, whether it be for business or recreation. She retired from Boeing in April 2014. For several years, including during retirement, Mary mentored students in Seattle University’s MBA program.


Mary met the love of her life, John McCoy, while in college. They married on July 21, 1978. John coached Connor and Kevin’s sports teams. Mary kept score for nearly all their sports games, especially baseball and basketball. Her score-keeping spanned Little League through high school (1995-2005). Coaches, parents and officials alike appreciated her positive attitude and diligent work. The house was filled with Connor and Kevin’s friends and teammates.


Gardening brought her tremendous joy. Mary filled her Sunset Garden Book with notes of plants in her yard and whether they flourished. She had begun growing saffron crocuses in hopes of having hyper-locally sourced saffron. She kept a small herb and vegetable garden each year. Mary especially loved the Kubota Garden. She took her boys to its twice-yearly sales to search out new specimens to work into the yard.


Mary loved the theater and performance arts. She took Connor and Kevin to Seattle Children’s Theater as children and to music concerts and folk dance performances. For many years, she held season tickets to Seattle’s Intiman Theater. She thoroughly enjoyed attending ArtsWest auctions with friends.


She embraced John’s Swedish heritage with enthusiasm, forging pen pal relationships with extended family in Sweden. Mary and John visited the Swedish family a few times, once with Connor and Kevin. On Christmas Eve, they enjoyed a traditional Swedish smorgasbord.


After retirement, Mary pursued an interest in water colors. She always had a good eye for line and color and found painting an enjoyable pastime. Although sometimes frustrating, she made great strides with her water colors and delighted when she mastered a new technique. Mary took classes with friends and family and especially enjoyed a week-long workshop with her niece, Chantal.


Mary was preceded in death by her mother, Didi McIntosh, and infant son, Matthew. In addition to John, Connor and Kevin McCoy, survivors include her father, Hugh McIntosh; siblings Susan, Margie, Jim, Donna, John, Sally, Joseph and Jerry; nieces and nephews Thomas and David Burdick, Alexandre, Chantal, Monique and Gabrielle Robert, Emma and Eric McIntosh, Sophia and Bernadette McIntosh, and Julia McIntosh. She leaves legions of friends with whom she had enduring relationships.


Mary will be remembered for her leadership, abiding love, and for bringing out the best in others.


Quinn Wirth
Novato, CA
Dec 21, 2018

I worked for Mary on a strategic project, she was brilliant. Super passionate, relentless energy and a person to look up to. What I remember most is the wine bottle cork she gave me that she initialed "MMM". As she gave it to me, she said "whenever life or work is tough and things are quite right, grab your cork and it will bring you to the surface". As we know, cork floats. I have paid it forward with others the same cork and story (helps that my wife works in the wine industry and we have plenty of used corks). You really made an impact on me … RIP MMM. :-)

Mary Despard
Wichita, KS
Mar 30, 2018

I was truly saddened to hear of Mary’s passing. She was my boss, mentor and true friend for many years. I will miss her greatly.

Shirley L Ramuta
Edmonds, WA
Feb 24, 2017

Her years were too few, her suffering too much, yet she didn't let that stop her from enjoying people and favorite activities. She has always been an inspiration to me and she has most certainly left her mark on this world. Her life truly made a difference.

T Flowers
Lisle, IL
Feb 22, 2017

Please accept my condolences. May you continue to have the support of family and friends during this difficult time (Proverbs 17:17). My deepest sympathy to you.

JoAnn Hicks
Kennewick, WA
Feb 21, 2017

I was very saddened to hear about Mary's passing, which was way too soon, my sis-in-law for many years. I'm glad I was able to reconnect with her (and John) last year in Cabo and at Jessica's baby shower. My thoughts and prayers are with John, Connor, and Kevin and the rest of the family during this difficult time.

Bob Odom
Seattle, WA
Feb 20, 2017

I knew Mary many years ago. What a lively, lovely, engaging person! The world is a little darker because of her passing.

steven van ness
charlotte courthouse, va
Feb 20, 2017

too soon.

Pat Solon
Seattle, Wa
Feb 19, 2017

Such a good friend. Such a delightful sense of humor and wit. Such an inspiring ability to rebound from any setback or challenge. A woman of so many talents and much generosity. Queen of the Positive Attitude. My condolences to John, Kevin and Connor, the family and to us all.

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