William Cardwell McBride, of Pensacola, passed away on Thursday, February 15, at the age of 75. He was called “Bill” by his friends, and everyone who knew him soon became a friend. Bill was a big-hearted man, generous in deed and spirit, who loved to laugh and enjoy a good time and a dry martini. Throughout his life he faced adversity with courage and a smile, repeating his mantra that you must never slow down or stop, but always move forward, “like a shark.”
Bill was born in Newnan, Georgia in 1942 to Henry and Mary McBride. He graduated from University of California at Santa Barbara, where he lived with his beloved brothers of the Sig Ep fraternity. After graduation, he enrolled in Officer Candidate School, and served in the Navy as an officer on a supply ship in Vietnam. In 1968, he met the love of his life, Kathleen Tennant, in San Francisco. They had three children and celebrated 50 years of marital bliss shortly before his passing.
After a long career in the trade show industry which moved the family around the country Bill and Kathleen moved to Pensacola in 1995. There Bill embarked upon his second career, obtaining his contractor’s license and founding Bill McBride Construction. Active members of their community, Bill and Kathleen loved their life as “North Hillbillies.” Bill was a Pensacola Wahoos season ticket holder, a Friend of Pensacola Opera, a dog lover and a rabid fan of the San Francisco Giants. He loved to golf and travel, especially to play famous golf courses around the world with his friends from Golf Club Atlas.
Bill is survived by his three children, David McBride and his wife Heather and their sons, Jacob and Owen, Amy McBride and her husband Daniel Tabachnick and their daughter Cecilia and Jane McBride. He is also survived by his younger brother, Robert “Bink” McBride and his wife Pam and their children, Michael and Jenny.
A celebration of Bill’s life will be held on Sunday, March 25 at the Pensacola Yacht Club from 1:00—3:00 pm. In lieu of flowers, please donate to your favorite charity.