James B. MacDonald

May 29, 1950 ~ October 23, 2021 (age 71)


James B. MacDonald, 71, passed away on Oct. 23, 2021 at his home in Alexandria. Known as Buff to family and friends, he is survived by his wife of 42 years, Susan Hussey MacDonald, and his son, James B. MacDonald IV (Mac), 27. He was predeceased by his parents, James and Jewell, and a brother, John.

Having grown up in North Carolina, Buff retained a lifelong love of his home state, following his beloved Tar Heels with great passion. He graduated from University of North Carolina in 1973, and played on the Tar Heels freshman basketball team under the legendary coach Dean Smith. Buff seemingly knew every good restaurant and BBQ joint in the state, even after being an Alexandrian for decades.

During the 1970s, he shared his great love for music and his huge collection of songs at the legendary “Chinese Disco” in downtown Washington as the primary DJ on Saturday nights. “I would love nothing more than to travel back in time and see him in all his glory spinning records in the basement of a Chinese restaurant, loving life and becoming the urban legend that still exists today,” Mac, Buff’s son, said.

After a long and successful career in pharmaceutical sales, Buff retired with Susan to their Alexandria home. He was an avid golfer, sporting a single-digit handicap. He was an active member of the board of Belle Haven Country Club, and with his outgoing personality, recruited and nurtured many a new member to the club. He was also an active member of Old Presbyterian Meeting House where he was a deacon.

He had a wide range of friends, including pals from his Carolina days and countless golf buddies. They remember him as kind, generous, funny and a bit quirky.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Old Presbyterian Meeting House, at, and First Tee, at Everly-Wheatley Funeral Home will be taking care of funeral arrangements. Memorial service at 2 pm at Old Presbyterian Meeting House, Alexandria Va and Reception following from 3 to 5 pm at Belle Haven Country Club, Alexandria Va.

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Memorial Service
November 3, 2021

2:00 PM
Old Presbyterian Meeting House
321 S. Fairfax St.
Alexandria, VA 22314

Reception Following Service
November 3, 2021

3:00 PM
Belle Haven Country Club
6023 Fort Hunt Road
Alexandria, VA 22307

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