Cover photo for James Allen McDonald's Obituary
James Allen McDonald Profile Photo
1951 Jim 2023

James Allen McDonald

August 4, 1951 — August 21, 2023

Belton, Texas


James Allen McDonald, 72, of Belton, beloved husband, son, father, brother, and grandfather passed away peacefully on August 21, 2023, in Belton, Texas.

A life-long Christian, worshipping with fellow believers in various towns in New Mexico and Texas, Jim was most recently a member of the Northside Church of Christ in Temple.  Jim truly loved God with every fiber of his being and loved his neighbor as himself.  While he provided for his family by raising cattle on ranches in New Mexico and Texas, he can only be fully defined as a Christian who sought to serve others. 

Jim was born on August 4, 1951, in Canyon, Texas to Ray McDonald and Billie McDonald (née Bonds).  The family moved to Texline shortly thereafter to scratch out a living as farmers in the harsh Texas panhandle.  It was here that he met the love of his life, little Jonnie Sue Higgins who became his girlfriend in kindergarten.  Jim and Jonnie Sue were married on March 30, 1972 and remained inseparable.  Jonnie Sue was the epitome of a loyal partner, staying by his side for 51 years to the morning of his death.

After graduating Texline high school in 1969, Jim pursued higher education in Ag, earning a Bachelor’s degree from West Texas State University.  He worked for a short time towards a Master’s degree in Columbia, Missouri before returning to Texas to farm and ranch.

Jim loved raising cattle, in particular beautiful black Angus heifers as part of a cow-calf operation in Clayton, New Mexico for 20+ years.  It was here that they raised their two sons, Doug and Darin. Jim taught them the value of hard work, but more importantly, a love for God and His people. Often, while out on horseback, Jim would sing church songs with his boys, telling them “If you can’t sing good, you can at least sing loud”. He and Jonnie Sue worked together daily, feeding cattle, delivering calves, and caring for the livestock.  Jim knew each cow by its face and each one’s lineage, naming many of his favorite “pets”.  He was respected by his neighbors as an honest and knowledgeable “cow man”.

Having a deep love for people, Jim and Jonnie Sue were eventually drawn to serve the elderly, a demographic they felt to be too often overlooked.  Jim accepted a position as Chaplain at Lake View Christian Home in Carlsbad, NM and later, at Park Place nursing home in Georgetown, TX.  A sweet-spirited, humble man with a great sense of humor, Jim developed deep friendships with many nursing home residents who cherished their time together.  He offered solace to these friends during their most vulnerable moments, providing a sense of peace in difficult times.

Jim loved his family. As a dedicated father, he imparted wisdom and values that will be cherished for generations to come. His sons, Doug McDonald and wife Ami of Belton, and Darin McDonald and wife Stephanie of Belton, both pursued careers in medicine, largely motivated by the kindness and compassion they witnessed in their father.  Jim was also a proud grandfather to Cole McDonald and wife Cami, Bradin McDonald and wife Emma, Kylie Johnson and husband Andrew, Tyler McDonald and fiancé Anna, Lauryn McDonald, Katie McDonald, and Cooper McDonald. He treasured his grandchildren, often calling to leave inspirational or funny voicemails on their phones.  His greatest joy lay in the fact that his children and grandchildren are all Christians.

In addition to his immediate family, Jim is survived by his mother Billie McDonald; his brothers Johnny McDonald, Tom McDonald, and Tim McDonald; as well as numerous extended family members who held a special place in his heart.

A memorial service to celebrate Jim’s life will be held on August 26, 2023. The service will begin at 2:00 PM at Northside Church of Christ located at 3401 N. 3rd St., Temple, TX 76501. Family and friends are invited to attend this gathering of love where memories will be shared to honor Jim. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to Cherokee Children’s Home or Manuelito Navajo Children’s Home in Gallup, NM.

Although the void left by Jim's passing cannot be filled, we are comforted by the promise of the eternal heavenly reward for those who, like Jim, die in Christ. 

Arrangements are entrusted to Crotty Funeral Home & Cremation Services of Belton.

To send flowers to the family in memory of James Allen McDonald, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services

Memorial Service

Saturday, August 26, 2023

2:00 - 3:00 pm (Central time)

Northside Church of Christ

3401 N. 3rd St., Temple, TX 76501

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