Robert Ernest “Ernie” May Jr., born in Monticello, MS on January 28th 1933 to Robert Ernest May and Nancy Ophelia King May, passed away on March 25th 2021. Ernie grew up in Monticello where he graduated high school and went on to study pre-engineering at Co-Lin Junior College. From there he went on to Mississippi State University and graduated with a degree in Mechanical Engineering. In 1955, following graduation, him and wife Mary Yvonne Russell moved to California, where he worked for Douglas Aircraft Company (i.e. Northrop Grumman). It took about a year for them to decide that California was too far from home. On a cross country trip from LA-Florida, where Ernie was to be newly employed, Yvonne got hot and was “done driving”. As fate would have it, in Fort Worth, TX, he spotted a large aircraft factory. Ernie found his way there, walked in to apply, and was hired on the spot by Convair (i.e. General Dynamics i.e. Lockheed). With Convair, he was part of a work study program in Nuclear Engineering with SMU. In his illustrious career with Lockheed (formerly General Dynamics & Convair), from 1956-1998, Ernie worked on many world changing programs. These included but are not limited to: a later canceled atomic powered aircraft, the Parasite Fighter for the massive B-36, B-58 Hustler, F-111 Aardvark, F-16 Fighting Falcon, and F-22 Raptor. As a very dedicated Chief Engineer, Ernie retired from Lockheed after 41+ years of employment.
Robert Ernest May Jr was a loving father, grandfather, and great grandfather. His favorite thing to do was enjoy the scenery at the lake while being surrounded by family. The world lost a great intellectual, funny, kind, caring man with his passing.
Ernie was proceeded in death by his parents, and brother Jimmy Glen May, wife of 30 years Mary Yvonne Russell, wife of 20 years Bettye Brown May, wife JoAnn Weston May-together for 11 beautiful years. Ernie is survived by his son Robert Russell May and wife Julie Fetty May; daughter Angie “May” Brown; grandson Ryan May; granddaughter Amira Williams; grandsons Austin and Andrew Brown; great grandchildren AJ, Aiden, and August Brown; brother Lester May and wife Nancy May. There are many others too many to mention…he was loved and respected by all.
The first memorial will be at Lake Bridgeport, TX Lakeview Estates Pavilion on Sunday, April 18th at 2:00 pm. The final memorial will be held at the Lawrence County Civic Center in Monticello, MS on Saturday, May 29th at 2:00 pm. In lieu of flowers please send donations in the name of Robert E. May to The Disabled Veteran’s Association.
“Don’t cry because it’s over smile because it happened.” – Dr. Seuss
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