Born in 1948 and raised in Inverness, Scotland, Allan McKenzie’s father was a heavy-vehicle driver who had previously served in RN during WW2; his mother was an office worker. He was an only child.
Mac joined the RN as an Engineering Artificer as a 16 year old in 1964. He enjoyed his apprenticeship, went to sea and decided he wanted to be a pilot. He transferred to Dartmouth in 1968 and was awarded his Wings in 1969.
Mac subsequently served on exchange in RAN 1970-71 on Wessex. He met wife (Diane) returning home to UK and was married in 1973.
Allan transferred to RAN in 1976, again on Wessex, then the Bell 206 before joining Moresby in late-1977 as the Flight Commander. His daughter, Melanie was born 1976 and son, Ross in 1978. He and Diane have no grandchildren.
Mac departed Moresby end-1979 on posting as a newly promoted LCDR to NHQ in Canberra. He was not happy going to Canberra and resigned after an hour in the office – he took over from a Leading Seaman in a non-aviation related job.
Mac joined NSW Police Air Wing in Sydney 1980-82 but then transferred to Lloyd Helicopters in Adelaide due excessive night and weekend duties serving as a Senior Constable. He flew with Lloyds in Karratha, then as ‘Fly In Fly Out’ at Troughton Island from Perth to 1992.
Surprising everyone, including his family, Mac studied Theology at Murdoch University, Perth from 1992, and was ordained in 1996 as a Uniting Church minister. His first parish was Meekatharra 1996-99, which suited him as he had a parish light aircraft to visit his far flung flock! Returning to Perth, he became the chaplain at Wesley College during 2000-12 inclusive, before retiring to a small plot of land south of Perth.
Mac’s health had struggled on and off since a Gall Bladder operation went wrong prior to entering the ministry. He quietly died from these complications on Thursday 27 July 2023.
A celebration of Mac’s life will be held in the Staffroom of Wesley College, Swan Street, South Perth, at 11am on 20 August, 2023. All who knew him are welcome.