Gary A. May 1949 - 2022

Gary A. May, 72, passed away June 26, 2022, while at Oregon Health & Science University.

Gary was born in Carmel, California, where he attended Salinas High School, graduating in 1967. Shortly after graduation, he joined the Air Force. Gary served as the personal chef of a three-star general while in Alaska. Gary had a diverse professional career in the culinary field. When Gary left the Air Force, he worked at a variety of agencies ranging from the Ski Slopes in Boyne Falls and Traverse City, to high-end restaurants, and managed food service in the Camps of Prudhoe Bay. In 1991, while continuing to work in Prudhoe Bay, Gary and his wife, Susan May, made their home in McMinnville, Oregon. In 1995, he made a career change, working first as a dealer at Spirit Mountain Casino, where he moved into shift supervisor before retiring in 2015. Gary was active in retirement, supporting his wife in her nonprofit, Mastiff Rescue Oregon, which rescues and rehomes mastiffs in need. Gary's heart was full of these big dogs, rescuing many for their personal dogs and providing homes for approximately 700 mastiffs over the years. He would be seen walking the big dogs around town, rain or shine. Gary also enjoyed barbecuing for his family and friends; he enjoyed gardening and watching the Mariners and Portland Trail Blazers, regardless of if they were winning or not. Gary had a great sense of humor with a quick dry wit. He has left a huge hole in our hearts and will be greatly missed.

Gary was preceded in death by his parents, William and Rosalee May; his sister, Lyn Gallegly; and brother, Anthony May. Gary is survived by his wife, Susan Pearson-May; his daughter, Tanya Lyn May and her children, Scott and Breelyn; his brothers, Russell May and Donald May; nieces, Dina Debrock, Cathleen Single and Laura Martin; and nephew, Scott Gallegly.

There will be a celebration of life held at De Ponte Cellars, date to be determined. In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation Gary's name to Mastiff Rescue Oregon. To leave condolences, please visit


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