Obituary: William J. McCabe, father of Darien resident, project manager of Man on the Moon program
William J. McCabe, a retired engineering and manufacturing executive, died January 30, 2016 at Danbury Hospital of complications brought about by pneumonia. A resident of New Canaan for 48 years, he was 90 years old.
The son of an aeronautical engineer, Valentine R. McCabe and Mary Driscoll McCabe, he was born in New York City on March 2, 1925. He was raised in Brooklyn and Paterson, New Jersey. He entered Marquette University in 1942 and in 1944 received a Presidential Appointment to the U.S. Naval Academy at Annapolis, Maryland. Upon graduation, he served in a number of assignments prior to transferring to the Submarine Service where he served for four years. After the Korean War he joined General ElectricDefense Operations where he was Project Manager – Polaris Fire Control Systems(First Intercontinental Ballistic Missile Launched from a Nuclear Submarine). He later joined General Motors Corporation’s Aerospace Department where he was Project Manager of the B-52 Bombing and Navigation System. In 1964, he was made Project Manager of the Apollo Guidance and Navigation Systems (Man on the Moon Program).
Mr. McCabe spent 10 years as Operations Manager and Plant manager for manufacturing companies in the Tri-State area. His last 12 years prior to retirement in 1993 were with United States Surgical Corporation in Norwalk, CT as Senior Director, Materials and Purchasing. He was a Eucharistic Minister at St. Aloysius Church for 25 years and a member of the Utility Commission for the Town of New Canaan. Also, he was a member of the New Canaan Senior Men’s Club.
He is survived by his wife of 68 years, Lucille Wordell McCabe, formerly of Milwaukee, Wisconsin and eight children, William R. McCabe, of Minneapolis, MN, Joseph A. McCabe of New Canaan, CT, Thomas F. (Joyce) McCabe of Darien, CT, John P. (Susan) McCabe of Boston, MA, Mary G. McCabe of Lutz FL, Patrick M. (Kathleen) McCabe of Unionville, CT, James A. McCabe of Palm Springs, CA, and Daniel E. (Lory)McCabe of Wilton, CT. In addition, he is survived by a brother, Robert F. McCabe of Wyomissing, PA. He was predeceased by two sisters, Margaret T. Schwartz of Greensboro, NC and Mary McCabe Reinert of Cincinnati, OH. Mr. McCabe has 20 grandchildren and 3 great-grandchildren.
A Mass of Christian Burial will be held at St. Aloysius Church at 1:00pm on Cherry Street in New Canaan, CT on Saturday, February 6, 2016 with burial service to follow at Lakeview Cemetery in New Canaan. Friends may call at the Hoyt Funeral Home, 199 Main Street, New Canaan, CT on Friday, February 5 from 4:00-8:00pm (www.hoytfuneralhome.com). Contributions in Mr. McCabe’s memory may be made to the Multiple Sclerosis Society.