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Updated: 12/24/2013 12:34:00PM

H. Noel McDonald

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H. Noel McDonald, 76, of Punta Gorda, Fla., passed away peacefully Sunday, Dec. 22, 2013, at South Seas Plantation.

He was born Jan. 24, 1937, in Evansville Ind., to Noah and Dorothy McDonald.

Noel joined the U.S. Army after attended Reitz High School. He earned his bachelor’s degree in education at the University of Evansville, and a master’s degree from Indiana University. He married Sandra Paceley in 1963 and raised two daughters in Evansville. Noel devoted his professional career to education. He was a teacher in the Evansville School District from 1961 to 1970, and a principal from 1971 until his retirement in 1992. During this time he was also an adjunct professor at the University of Southern Indiana and acted as a court appointed special advocate, representing children in juvenile court proceedings.

Noel retired to Punta Gorda and redirected his teaching skills into sailing. He became an ASA Certified Sailing Instructor and earned a USCG Masters License and taught sailing to dozens of new enthusiasts and loved the cruising grounds of Southwest Florida. Noel enjoyed traveling with his wife and dear sailing friends.

Noel will be greatly missed by his wife of 50 years, Sandra; two daughters, Laura McDonald Bolin and Sarah McDonald; a granddaughter, Lindsay Bolin; and three brothers, Patric, David, and Mark McDonald.

A memorial service will be held at 3:30 p.m. Friday, Dec. 27, 2013, at the Congregational United Church in Punta Gorda, 1201 Aqui Esta Dr., Punta Gorda, FL 33950. Inurnment will be at Sarasota National Cemetery. Memorial donations may be made to Peace River Wildlife Center. To express condolences to the family, please visit and sign the online guest book.

Arrangements are by Larry Taylor Funeral.

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