David McMahon, Sr. died on March 23, 2016, just four days after we completed the 2016 Belle Point sale, and a few days before his 85th birthday and Easter, the holy celebration of spiritual renewal. Around his 60th birthday the manager of the Farmers Co-Op asked, “Dave, when are you gonna retire?” Dave clarified, “Does retired mean I get to do whatever I want to do, whenever I want to do it?” The man said, “Yeah!” Dave announced, “Well, I guess I’m already retired!”

David McMahon loved life and loved his work. And he never stopped doing all the things he loved!

You may not know there was a little secret to David McMahon’s famous boundless energy, and zest for life and work. When he was in his early 30’s, his doctor prescribed a midday nap, every day, to get him off his feet and help control the symptoms of gout. We figure 50 years of 20–minute naps added up to 365,000 minutes of extra sleep that greatly contributed to his health and productivity! Those snoozes created “a whole new day” for him. When most everyone else would be winding down in late afternoon, his power nap had given him a fresh start. From about two in the afternoon ‘til dark he had renewed energy to think, and plan, and WORK on all the things he cared about!

David may never have been a strict “rule follower,” in fact he was a bit of a maverick. Truly, an original thinker. But he was very respectful – of other people, and cultural traditions, and the
natural order of life. He respected imagination, and vision that creates IDEAS. He respected deep thought that develops into a PLAN. He respected confidence, and the kind of “roll up your sleeves” effort it takes to put plans into ACTION.

Randy Travis sings a truth: “It’s not what you take when you leave this world behind you, it’s what you leave behind you when you go.”

David McMahon left behind a wonderful wife and a vibrant, loving family that works together and cares about our community. He left behind a dynamic business and ranching operation that he tried to improve every day of every year.

We keep learning of the impacts he left behind in the lives of countless people he helped, often without anyone else ever knowing. He left local organizations and worthy causes much better than he found them many years ago – 4-H, Boy Scouts, two youth shelters, two hospitals, his own church and the churches of his friends, numerous improvement projects in our city, county and state, the wonderful Subiaco Monastery, his alma mater Oklahoma State University and the University of Arkansas Fort Smith, and, of course, the National Junior Angus program and the Angus Foundation.

He also left behind a lot of work that needs to be done! We soon realized that it’s going to take ALL of us to do all of his jobs. It will take all the knowledge, skills, talents and experience of Mary Ann, his children and their spouses, his adult grandchildren and their spouses, and, so far, one great granddaughter, to carry on the work he loved so much, that made such a difference in the lives of so many people. We are being helped immeasurably by our loyal and trusted employees, especially longtime, key staff members whom we consider family. Our entire McMahon Family has committed to TRY…and we’re seriously working on it!

The phrase “Move Forward” was David’s own directive to us, proving his faith in the future of our family and our business. The genetic enhancements of Belle Point’s breeding program, and all the improvements you will see at the ranch were on Dave’s “to-do lists” in the last five years of his life. Project by project, step by step, together, we are brainstorming IDEAS, researching and developing PLANS, and rolling up our sleeves to continue, with confidence, putting his dreams and desire for excellence into ACTION. We have accomplished quite a lot very quickly. You will see progress in our livestock, our land, our facilities, our business and management practices, and increased active involvement of our family members. “Moving Forward” is our tribute to him.

We cherish your kind words, inspiring encouragement and powerful prayers. We welcome your “Dave Stories!” We will always respect your trust in us, it is the foundation of our business. And, we will always treasure the friendship you bestow, as Dave would say, in true belief and magical wonderment, “All because of the Angus cow!”