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Max McGaugh, age 75, of Bentonville, Arkansas passed away peacefully at home on the morning of Saturday, July 27, 2019. He was born on June 6, 1944 in Bentonville, the son of the late Elliott and Lola McGaugh.
A proud fourth generation NW Arkansan and Bentonville native, he graduated from Bentonville High School in 1962 where he played trumpet in the high school band. That same year, he eloped with his high school sweetheart, and love of his life - Charlene. Together they shared the next fifty-seven years of their life together working as partners running McGaugh Auto Parts, raising their two children and travelling constantly as part of their well-earned retirement from the auto parts business. Retirement did not last long however, as he soon began a successful second career in the commercial real estate business.
Max was very active in the Bentonville community where he served as president of the Jaycees, the Chamber of Commerce, the Bentonville School Board and Kiwanis Club, and served on various boards including the Bank of Bentonville (now Arvest) and the Single Parent Scholarship Fund. He served on the first committee that worked on a plan for a regional airport and as a deacon at First Baptist Church.
He received the R.E. Buck Award for Excellence in Business Leadership from the Bentonville/Bella Vista Chamber of Commerce in 1997, and in 2018 The Greater Bentonville Chamber of Commerce established the Max McGaugh Award which annually awards a local small business that consistently provides the Greater Bentonville Area with outstanding professional or skill trade services that improves the area’s quality of life.
Max loved the Razorbacks, NASCAR, snow-skiing and travelling. He was a Razorback football and basketball season ticket holder since the early 1980’s and loved attending bowl and tournament games. He lived out his dream of being a race car driver at fantasy camp at the Charlotte Motor Speedway as part of his 50th birthday present and attended numerous NASCAR races around the country. His love of speed and living life to the fullest led to flying lessons and numerous ski trips to Colorado with family and friends over the years until a run in with a tree, and insistence from his family, convinced him to hang up the ski poles. Annual trips to the Hawaiian Islands, Hilton Head, Florida, Las Vegas, and Colorado were punctuated with Alaskan and Caribbean cruises, trips to Mexico and leaf peeping trips to the Northeast. And since his love for travelling never ceased, when he did find himself at home, long motorcycle rides on his Honda Goldwing with his Wednesday riding group helped quench the thirst to always be on the go.
He also loved the arts and visiting with friends. He was an original member of Crystal Bridges and a long-time season ticket holder at TheatreSquared. He always sought out plays and performances wherever he travelled – and luaus were definitely considered a cultural experience. He enjoyed his weekly card group, monthly Class of ’62 dinners, Sunday School group and telling bad jokes with his early morning coffee buddies.
He was a very proud parent and grandparent who logged many miles travelling to and cheering at gymnastic and tennis meets and play and music performances. He will be missed by all who knew and loved him.
He is survived by his wife, Charlene McGaugh; his two children, Tami Bever and her husband, Mark of Bentonville and Jamey McGaugh and his wife, Jessica of Fayetteville; sisters, Shirli Sligar of Bentonville and Charlotte Camp of McDonough, Georgia; grandchild, Anna Bever, along with many other nieces and nephews.
He was preceded in death by his father, Elliott McGaugh and mother, Lola McGaugh.
Memorial Visitation will be from 5:00 until 7:00PM, Wednesday, July 31, 2019 at First Baptist Church in Bentonville.
Memorial Service will be at 10:00AM, Thursday, August 1, 2019 at First Baptist Church in Bentonville.
In lieu of flowers and to remember Max and his community service, please make donations to The ALS Association Arkansas Chapter, 1200 W Walnut Street #2406-08, Rogers, AR 72756 or als-arkansas.org or Washington Regional Hospice, 325 E Longview St, Fayetteville, AR 72703 wregional.com/foundation/donate-online.