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Delvin Hugh McMillan

August 26, 1926 - March 16, 2021


Delvin Hugh McMillanDelvin Hugh McMillanDelvin Hugh McMillan, age 94, of Salem, Oregon, went gently home from Salem to Glory on March 16, 2021. Semper Fidelis, Always Faithful, this World War II Marine Corps veteran was born to George Wesley McMillan and Myrtle Ann Cole McMillan on August 26, 1926, in Chisholm, Minnesota. The family soon moved to Havre, Montana, where Delvin grew up as one of six children: Hazel, Joyce, Donna, Delvin, Byron, and Richard.

In 1944, at age 17, Delvin enlisted in the United States Marine Corps, joining Company I, 3rd Battalion, 8th Regiment, 2nd Division, in the Pacific Theater of World War II. He served in the Battle of Saipan 1944, the Battle of Tinian 1944, and the Battle of Okinawa 1945, where Lieutenant General Simon Bolivar Buckner was killed while reviewing Delvin’s successful 3rd Battalion. With the 8th Regiment, young Delvin landed at Nagasaki Harbor 1945 and served in the Occupation of Japan for nine months 1945–1946.

Following his honorable discharge in 1946, Delvin returned home to Havre, married Helen Elaine Jensen in 1947, and started a family that would soon include two sons, Delvin Ray McMillan in 1948 and Randall Lee McMillan in 1951. Delvin received service-related care at the Montana State Tuberculosis Sanitarium for nine months in 1948, then attended Northern Montana College. He joined the Veterans of Foreign Wars Drum and Bugle Corps in Havre, and eventually became a life member of the VFW.

Delvin served as a driver for Eddy’s Bread and a clerk for the Great Northern Railway. The family followed the work west to Cashmere, Washington, and Seattle, Washington, in the early 1950s. Delvin drove for Seattle Transit System from that time through the 1960s. He also joined the Ballard Eagleson VFW Post 3063, working through the ranks and remaining a life member of that local group.

Shawn Patrick McMillan, born in 1967, made Delvin a thankful and happy grandfather.

In 1968, Delvin led the VFW to sponsor what was then the primarily Japanese American Seattle Imperials Drum and Bugle Corps. They went on to compete nationally and earn high awards for the next fifteen years. Delvin gained many lifelong dear friends through their time serving together with the Imperials.

An active Republican, Delvin held elected precinct offices wherever he lived, from 1964 to 2021. He worked in the Washington State Senate between 1969 and 1996, mostly as an assistant sergeant at arms and, eventually, as the executive assistant to the senate majority. For decades, he was also appreciated for the lapel buttons that he created for every person or occasion.

Delvin married Leslie Ann Brown on March 18, 1981, in Olympia, Washington. For their wedding, they simply took the afternoon off and walked over from their work in the capitol building to the supreme court chamber. Their fortieth wedding anniversary arrived on Delvin’s third day in Heaven.

From 1975 to 2019, Delvin attended all of the McMillan Family Reunions, which were held every two or three years. Leslie first met the entire McMillan Clan at their Lincoln City reunion in 1981. Planning for the 2022 reunion is already underway.

Unexpectedly, at a conference in Portland in 1989, Delvin and Leslie entrusted their lives to Jesus. They soon joined many Bible studies and participated in various ministries and activities at Westwood Baptist Church in Olympia. In 1998, Delvin and Leslie answered the unanticipated call to serve the huge population of Russian-speaking refugees in Brooklyn, New York. They assisted thousands at a center for English/Bible classes and other programs on Brighton Beach Avenue. They were vessels for material help and messages of comfort after the devastations of September 11, 2001. In 2012, Hurricane Sandy flooded buildings, destroyed vehicles, and left enormous sand deposits near the center and for miles along the coastline. Half a block from the ocean, the center was safe and available to provide assistance, which continued daily for two months as repairs and reconstruction in the region slowly progressed. Delvin and Leslie ministered in Brooklyn for sixteen years.

Delvin’s care at his beloved VA Medical Centers began in Brooklyn. His doctor told him to walk daily and keep track on the calendar, so Delvin obeyed for twenty years and well over 10,000 miles. He was also active with the Scottish community in New York. A highlight in 2009 was the visit to Finlaystone in Scotland, the international headquarters of Clan MacMillan.

Bermet Beksultan and her little son, Baatyr, from Kyrgyzstan, joined the McMillan family in 2010. Providentially, after the Brooklyn work was completed, they all moved to a wonderful neighborhood in Salem, Oregon, in 2014. They immediately found a warm and nurturing community at Salem First Baptist Church. Delvin enjoyed his long daily walks through the neighborhood, where he was always glad to chat with people and animals. Along with Leslie, he was happy to reestablish family and friend connections in the Northwest. He also loved and supported Leslie’s extended family, the Chinook Indian Nation.

Leslie cared for Delvin at home, with deep love and togetherness, during the last two years before he rose to Glory. The Lord is good and safe to trust.

Delvin is survived by his wife, Leslie; his son, Delvin, and grandson, Shawn; his brother, Richard; family Bermet and Baatyr; loving in-laws, cousins, nieces, and nephews; dear friends who are family; and countless others who are part of Delvin’s treasure.

Two celebrations of life for Delvin Hugh McMillan will take place on Memorial Day weekend, May 29 to 31, 2021. All are invited to attend one or both events.

The main service will be held at Salem First Baptist Church, on the block of Marion, Liberty, Union, and Commercial downtown, at 10:00 am on Saturday, May 29. That will be followed by a light lunch gathering at Riverfront Park.

The graveside service will be held at Ilwaco Cemetery at 10:00 am on Monday, May 31. That will be followed by a light lunch gathering on the grounds of the Colbert House.

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Remembering Del with loving thoughts...especially his & Leslie’s hospitality when our Olympia group came to sing The Messiah for the Russian Jewish community in Brooklyn. What an incredible experience they orchestrated for us!! Sending my love and condolences to all the family. Praising God, knowing Del is with our Savior & King! 



Great words on a life well lived.
Thankful he is with his Heavenly Father.
Sue Nomensen



Leslie, My heart will be with you as you take Del to his final resting place. His long life was a time well spent and testimony to your nurturing love. May your memories bring you endless comfort. I hope to see you soon, either here or Camp Sherman.
Love,
Kris



It was an honor and a great experience for me and my son Baatyr to have Del as an adopted grandfather. I believe that God arranged this adoption because Del always reminded me of my own father. And he was only alive grandfather which Baatyr knew. Del’s life long and bravely lived will be an inspiration for us forever. Love and care which Leslie gave to Del are very impressive and unforgettable. As her dedication to care about us as her family. Man was blessed to have a beautiful and a faithful wife. Del’s service to the World and his beloved America during World War 2 is a simple 
heroism of a very young man who voluntarily and bravely went all the way to Okinawa. Rest In Peace, Del. We love you. And we’ll take care of your beloved Leslie. 



So sorry for your loss. It's good to have family & friends near. Praying that the Lord's love & strength be with you & your family during this time.



So kind was his encouragement and so genuine his words that he would share with me after I preached.  He made being his pastor a great joy and honor.  



I greatly appreciate the kind remarks in remembrance of Delvin. This video celebrates his life and, especially, the faithfulness of Jesus, Who guided his way and brought him home to Glory.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wmLLpLJw9hA