My Story

My legal name is David Anthony McGinnis, but most of my family and friends have always called me “Tony”.      I was born in Gastonia, Gaston County, NC on 29 October 1952.  I left the hospital with my parents, Carl Herman and Margaret “Peg” Rhodes McGinnis, and was taken to meet my three sisters at our home on Kiser Road in Dallas, NC.  I grew up as a “country boy”, and consider my early life an idyllic one, surrounded by extended family and neighbors.  I would eventually attend Carr Elementary and Dallas High School; being a part of the last graduating class in 1971.  I attended North Carolina State University as a student in the School of Design: Architecture; and though I left early, I returned to NC State almost twenty years later and attained both a BA and MA in History.

I met my future wife at Dallas High School, and we married in Raleigh during my early attendance at NCSU; we had our one and only child there, a son we named Anthony Brande McGinnis.  We always call our son “Brande” (it's pronounced as Brand, with the “e” being silent); I don't think he ever forgave his mother and me for putting that “e” on his name, so when he made a change of schools into middle school in Charlotte he began this “new” life as Anthony.

Upon leaving NCSU and Raleigh in 1975, we returned to Dallas where I joined my father in business, where I worked for the next nineteen years before making that return to NC State.   After graduation and a ten year stint working in Raleigh, and a few years on Daufuskie Island, SC (near Hilton Head Island), we once again made our way back to our old hometown of Dallas.

Our coming back home was not all our own choice; our son Anthony had married in June of 2006 and three months later was diagnosed with a brain tumor.  With surgery, treatment, and monitoring he was able to return to work and his life with his new wife, Whitney.  Years later it seemed as though he may be free and clear, and it was with great joy and excitement that he and Whitney gave us the news they were expecting our first grandchild. Unfortunately fate would rear its ugly head once again and in September of 2013 we learned the brain tumor had returned.  He had surgery and his daughter, Berklee Clay McGinnis, was born during the first two weeks of October.  The prognosis was not as good this time, and after fighting the good fight for almost two years, we lost him to brain cancer on July the 4th, 2015; his 41st birthday.

I have said for many years that I would one day write a book that contains my ancestral history, along with all the family stories that I have accumulated.   My hope is that this blog will be my attempt to get that started.  I had intended to leave all this gathered information with my son, but regrettably he is not here; so I dedicate this website, and its information, to the memory of our son Anthony Brande, and to our granddaughter, Berklee.