Cover photo for Malcolm Mackey's Obituary
Malcolm Mackey Profile Photo

Malcolm Mackey

July 20, 1929 — April 1, 2024

Malcolm Mackey

July 20, 1929 — April 1, 2024


On Monday, April 1st, 2024 at the age of 94, Judge Malcolm H. Mackey passed away peacefully at his Sherman Oaks home surrounded by his loved ones. From July 20, 1929 onward, he embraced a life full of strength, laughter, positivity, and courage. He was often the heart and soul of a party, a courthouse, or a home. 

‘Mac,’ as he was affectionately known, led a life that was intimately intertwined with some of the greatest events of his era. He was born to Winifred Hamilton and William Mackey just three months before the start of the Great Depression, and grew up in the New York City tenements. At 17, he had finally convinced his mother to let him enlist in the Marines, just in time to serve aboard the USS Midway at the tail end of the Second World War. His first of many international trips, Mac was stationed in Italy where he met Pope Pius XII. After his service, he graduated from NYU and was scammed into moving to California to pursue modeling. At the suggestion of Father Donovan, he instead pursued law at Southwestern Law School with fellow classmates, the future mayor Tom Bradley, businessman Don Sterling, and Don Gallagher, who would become his lifelong friend. 

A staunch advocate for Democratic politics, Mac found himself face to face with Ronald Reagan, who he successfully sued several times over his career. He also stood on the side of figures like Martin Luther King, Cesar Chavez, and Muhammad Ali. In one oft-recounted story, Mac snuck into, out of, and back into again, the Democratic Primary held at the Ambassador Hotel only moments after Robert Kennedy’s assassination. 

While Mac traveled the world, there was no place he would have rather been than his courtroom. Since 1979, he has heard and ruled upon thousands of cases dutifully serving justice to the people of California for nearly 45 years, arguing cases before the Appellate and Supreme Courts of California as well as the U.S. Supreme Court. He was reelected by the people 11 times in his career, elected Presiding Judge of the Los Angeles Municipal Court and serving as a Pro Tem on the Los Angeles Court of Appeal. 

In addition to his professional accomplishments, Malcolm will be remembered for his warmth, generosity, and unwavering commitment to upholding the rule of law. He was a loving husband to his wife of 31 years, Rachel, a cherished father to his children, Michael, Kristie, Andrea, and Malcolm Martin, a beloved grandfather to his grandchildren Teah and Sasha as well as a friend to Lola the dog. His passing leaves a void in the legal community, but his legacy will endure as an inspiration to all who had the privilege of knowing him.

Service Schedule

Past Services

Funeral Service of Malcolm Mackey

Saturday, May 4, 2024

12:30 - 1:30 pm (Pacific time)

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