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Angus MacDonald, 86, Dies; Greenwich Author, MIT Alum

GREENWICH, Conn. – Angus Nathaniel MacDonald of Greenwich died July 8 at his home of complications from lymphoma. He was 86.

MacDonald was president of Angus MacDonald & Co., a corporate merger and acquisition firm he founded in 1970. A member of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Corp. for almost 40 years, he joined the institute's board of trustees in 1973 and was named life member emeritus of the corporation in 2001.

During his time with MIT Corp., MacDonald served on many visiting committees, including aeronautics and astronautics, development, humanities, political science and Whitaker College. He most recently worked in neuroscience, chairing the corporation's visiting committee on brain and cognitive sciences from 1994 to 2000

In 1970, MacDonald received the Bronze Beaver Award, the MIT Alumni Association’s highest honor. He was named a founding life sustaining fellow in 1979. MacDonald served as president of the MIT Alumni Association in 1981 and 1982 and later served on the board of associates of the McGovern Institute for Brain Research and the Whitehead Institute for Biomedical Research. MacDonald was also a founding member of the MIT Council for the Arts.

He also served on President Ronald Reagan's Task Force on the Arts and Humanities from 1981 to 1982 and was a past president of the Toynbee Prize Foundation. He was also a founder of the Festival Orchestra Society of New York.

MacDonald was born Jan. 13, 1926, in Baltimore. At age 16, his enlistment with the Naval Air Force was deferred. MacDonald was sent to take courses at Harvard University for a year. He went on to earn a bachelor's degree in aeronautics and astronautics at MIT in 1946 and a master's degree in mechanical engineering in 1947.

He also wrote three books: "Middle Ground," "At Fault" and "Ultimate Concerns and Other Vanities: The Legacy of Ledgerock, a Greenwich Oasis.” "At Fault," a novel about an aircraft that crashes into a Miami high-rise, was optioned as a movie but the project was shelved after the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11.

MacDonald is survived by his wife of 47 years, Monaise MacDonald of Greenwich; three daughters, Laurel MacDonald, of Sag Harbor, N.Y., Susan Nobel, of Santa Barbara, Calif., and Robin Curtis, of Wilton; three grandchildren and a stepson, John Richards, of Mystic, Conn.

There will be no public memorial services. Memorial donations may be made to the MIT Department of Brain and Cognitive Sciences, c/o Bonny Kellermann , MIT Office of Memorial Gifts, 600 Memorial Drive, Room W98-500, Cambridge, MA 02139.

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