The family of Robert McDonald Parker have shared the following obituary.

September 2, 2021

The family of Robert McDonald Parker have shared the following obituary.

Anyone who knew Rob knew he had four loves in his life: his family, his football (i.e., soccer), his singing, and Clan Donald.

Rob was born on June 12, 1936, in Glasgow Scotland.  He was brought up there, during the second World War II, a scary time to be in Glasgow. One day at school, he heard some girls singing through the window and decided to mimic them.  The teacher must have recognized his talent because she encouraged him to continue singing.

At 15, Rob left school to get a job but by then was not only showing a talent as a singer but also as a footballer. He won a singing contest at 16 which led to him singing with a dance band on Friday and Saturday nights. He was given the opportunity to travel Europe with the dance band, but unfortunately it was during that time he received his call up papers for National Service and join the RAF. After his two years of service, he returned to Glasgow and football. In 1957 Rob won the Scottish Amateur Cup Medal with Giffnock North – a treasured possession he has til this day.

In 1958, Rob married with a child. Rob decided that there were more opportunities in the US than in post war Glasgow, so he made the decision to move his family to New York. Rob took a job working for Eastern Airlines in stores and worked his way up through the company to become the station manager at LaGuardia Airport. In between work and raising his two children, he continued to play football and sing.  He played for several different semi-professional football teams like the Yonkers Scots and the Brooklyn Celtics.  He was even honored with singing the National Anthem at both Shea Stadium and The Meadowlands.

In 1979, Rob returned to Scotland tempted by a job offer from Clan Donald. Rob was appointed to develop the land and estate around Armadale Castle on the Isle of Skye. He and his team turned a once neglected estate into a very successful visitor Centre, winning many awards, and becoming a focal point for clansfolk from Clan Donald and other West Highland clans all over the world.  He established a Ranger service that worked with local children as well as visitors, and, as Director, helped set up garden guided tours, archery competitions and sheepdog trials. The Stables restaurant became a popular venue for music concerts, and an annual piping competition. 

As busy as that all sounds, he still found time for his passions of football and singing.  He played football for a local team, Sleat & Strath, and sang at ceilidhs and dances at the Stables just for fun.

In 1999, Rob retired from Clan Donald.  He was having some mobility issues and was finally diagnosed with MS in 2001. Although he was officially retired, he still found time to serve as Chamberlain to the High Council of Clan Donald until 2012.

His retirement gave Rob more time for his most important passion, his family.  He got to spend more time with his wife Marion and their children’s families including children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren. One highlight was his 80th birthday party attended by most of his family.

Unfortunately, on July 11, 2021 Rob passed away peacefully in his sleep with Marion by his side.   Having lived 85 years on this earth, with many accomplishments and achievements to his credit, the most important one being the legacy of love of which he was so proud. He earned the deepest love and respect from his wife, their children’s families, and friends.  He lived life with passion and love and he will be greatly missed.