Bonaventure J Mack, JrApril 13, 1942 ~ October 10, 2017 (age 75)
Bonaventure James "BJ" Mack Jr., beloved husband of the late Rose F. Mack, father to April, Kris, and Cody Mack, brother to Chrystine Lutz and the late Jerry Mack, passed away peacefully on October 10th, 2017 at his home in Virginia. Born in Baltimore, he was the eldest son of Bonaventure James Mack Sr., an avionics engineer and Mary Ellen Mack, a serologist. He graduated from Parkville high school in 1961 and served as a Specialist Four in the Army National Guard Air 1st Squadron, 223rd Calvary up until his honorable discharge in March of 1970. After completing his service, he went on to work for L.B. Smith in Glen Burnie which kick started his interest in cranes. During his employment with L.B. Smith he became a skilled technician servicing and operating cranes. This experience landed him a job as a crane operator at McLean Contracting Company where he traveled up and down the east coast helping to build many of the bridges, overpasses and roadways in use today. He worked there for 40 years finally retiring in 2016. To say BJ was dedicated to his job was an understatement, he had a fond attachment to his crane and affectionately named it Rosie after his late wife, Rose Mack.
Outside of work, his hobbies included cars, mechanics and music. BJ had a high altitude for working on cars and was basically self-taught in the mechanical department, he took apart his first car engine at the age of 12 and put it back together. His mechanical ability was his gift and it came naturally to him. He was known to tinker around with cars in the garage where he would bring the boys, his son's Kris and Cody to teach them the ropes. BJ was a mechanic at heart and enjoyed refurbishing antique cars, specifically his cherry red '56 Chevy. He went on to purchase show cars which he entered into car shows at the Baltimore Civic Center. One show car in particular was named Midnight Madness, it was professionally painted black with rainbow swirls and received a lot of attention. He even had a race car that he built and drag raced at Capital Raceway on the weekends, when his daughter April accompanied him to the race track he made sure there were plenty of ear plugs on hand.
In his younger days, BJ and his late brother Jerry Mack, owned a rail car named The Green Jet Monster which they raced. It was painted emerald green and the engine was located in the back of the vehicle. BJ was notorious for informally street racing many cars including a Chevrolet Corvette Stingray with his brother Jerry and sister Chrystine as unknowing and helpless passengers in the car. The Mack brothers also played in a rock & roll cover band called "The Tangents". You could be sure to hear them play all the latest hits at parties of friends and family including some local venues.
BJ will be remembered as a feisty and funny, hard-working man who loved his family. He is survived by his children April Mack, Kris & Brittany Mack, Cody & Amanda Mack, sister and brother-in-law Chrystine & Tony Lutz as well as his ex-wives Gloria Mack and Madeline Mack.
Relatives and friends are invited to call at the family owned and operated MCCULLY-POLYNIAK FUNERAL HOME, P.A. 3204 Mountain Road PASADENA on Tuesday 3 to 5 and 7 to 9 PM. Where funeral services will be held on Wednesday at 10 AM. Interment Crownsville Veterans Cemetery.