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Donald A. May


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Don May passed away peacefully at home after a startlingly brief struggle with cancer on April 9, 2015. He was surrounded by his wife, Harriet, and his older daughter, Julie May McDougal. His younger daughter, Ellen May, was en route from her job in Paris to be by her fatherGÇÖs side.

Don was born in Washington DC on July 29, 1953, the son of Joseph and Janet May. He served in the U. S. Army as a special medic at Walter Reed Hospital. Don completed a BSN in nursing from the University of Maryland and a MasterGÇÖs program as a nurse anesthetist from Johns Hopkins Hospital.

Don was a quiet, low key man with intense interests. First and foremost he loved his wife of almost 39 years. Don and Harriet met when they were both nursing students. As young marrieds, they travelled the U.S. in their van. They loved to camp out and listen to the great music of that era. Don was not a cold weather guy, so they moved to Florida in 1979, first to Daytona Beach where Julie and Ellen were born, then to Palm Bay where they have lived since 1990.

Julie and Ellen were DonGÇÖs greatest joy. He loved them unconditionally, and they felt the same about their dad. Perhaps the saddest thing about losing Don so suddenly is that he will not get to see his first grandchild, Julie and JasonGÇÖs baby due in September.

Don was nothing if not methodical. He enjoyed the challenge of building his own computers. He was a wiz with finance and followed the markets intently. He was a great sports enthusiast, and college basketball was at the top of his list. Anything that caught his attention was investigated in minute detail, sometimes to the chagrin of his girls who learned there was no rushing DonGÇÖs decision-making process.

Don also played a leadership role in the recovery community. He spent a great deal of his free time helping others find a path to sobriety and stay clean. Many people in that community relied on his strength and intelligence. He will be sorely missed.

In addition to his wife, daughters, and son-in-law, Jason McDougal, Don is survived by his mother, Janet Walker, and his bothers, Vincent and Andrew May. Don was predeceased by his father, Joseph, and brothers, Joseph Jr. and Norse.

A memorial service is being held Tuesday, April 14, 2015 at 11:00 a.m. at Ammen Family Cremation and Funeral Care, 1001 South Hickory Street, Melbourne 32901. There will be a condolence lunch at 1372 Ashford Avenue NE, Palm Bay 32907 following the service.
Donations in DonGÇÖs memory may be made to the William Childs Hospice House, 381 Medplex Parkway, Palm Bay, FL 32907.


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Barry Dansky

April 12, 2015, 10:58 am

To the entire May family. Don was a wonderful friend and a kind and gentle man to all who knew him. We had him for all too brief a time, but I for one, will always cherish the time I got to spend getting to know Don and all of the laughter we shared together. Barry Dansky

Gerard T. Hogan

April 13, 2015, 2:26 pm

I’m so sorry for your loss. Our thoughts and prayers are with your family at this time.

Jerry Hogan
President – Florida Association of Nurse Anesthetists

Denise Cherne

April 13, 2015, 2:53 pm

Dear Harriet,
My deepest sympathy to you and your family. You are in my thoughts and prayers during this sad time. May you find comfort in your wonderful memories.

Jamshid and Fatemeh Sharif askary

April 13, 2015, 11:41 pm

Dear Harriet,Julie,and Ellen,
We are deeply saddened by the news of Don’s passing.Our heart felt condolences to you and your family.May the memories of your beloved husband and father help you find peace and comfort.

Eric R

April 14, 2015, 1:41 am

Don was a special person with many talents. Don helped many over come diversity with his kind words and actions. He’ll be missed by the community in which he served.
My deepest Sympathy, Thoughts and Prayers goes towards the family of Don.


April 16, 2015, 9:53 pm

Dear Harriet,
I was so saddened to hear the news and am grieving for you and your loss. I remember so well Don’s infectious laughter and joy; such a free spirit he was. My heart goes out to you and the girls. I wish you courage and peace. Love, Debala

Portnowitz Family

April 11, 2015, 10:39 pm

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