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Jeb S. Magruder

Born: Mon., Nov. 5, 1934
Died: Sun., May 11, 2014

No services to be held

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Jeb S. Magruder


Jeb Stuart Magruder died peacefully on May 11, 2014 in Danbury CT, due to complications from a stroke. He is survived by his four children and their spouses; Whitney Magruder (Jacqueline), Justin Magruder (Joyce), Tracy Sennett (Scott), and Stuart Magruder (Emily); and nine grandchildren.

Magruder was born on November 5, 1934, on Staten Island, NY, the younger of two brothers, to Donald and Edith Magruder. His father was a Civil War buff who named his second son after the Confederate General James Ewell Brown Stuart (J.E.B. Stuart). Magruder attended Curtis High School on Staten Island, followed by Williams College in Williamstown, MA. Midway through college, he served two years in the US Army in Korea. After graduating from Williams, he began his business career in San Francisco with the Crown Zellerbach Corp.

In 1959, Magruder married Gail Barnes Nicholas and moved with his new wife to Kansas City, MO, where he drove a Jewel Tea truck for home delivery of grocery items. In 1961, while continuing to work for Jewel, the family moved to Chicago where Magruder entered the Graduate School of Business at the University of Chicago to earn his MBA. He also worked briefly for Booz Allen & Hamilton while in school. In 1965, the family moved to Los Angeles, CA, where Magruder joined the Broadway Department Stores. He left Broadway after two years to start-up his own cosmetics company.

Early in 1969, Magruder was appointed to be the Special Assistant to the President of the United States for Domestic Policy Development, in the Nixon Administration. He accepted the position and the family moved to Washington, D.C. After several years, he was appointed Acting Director and then Deputy Director of the Committee to Reelect the President. Magruder and his team won the election by the second largest margin in history at the time, but his involvement in the Watergate burglary and cover-up resulted in Magruder spending seven months in Federal Prison.

Upon his release in 1975, the family moved to Colorado Springs, CO where Magruder worked as Vice President for YoungLife. In 1978, the family moved to Princeton, NJ, so he could attend the Princeton Theological Seminary. In 1984, Magruder was ordained as a Presbyterian minister, and he served several churches as associate pastor, in San Mateo, CA and Columbus, OH, and as pastor in Lexington, KY. He married Patti Newton Filipski in 1987, and helped raise her two children, Jennifer and Joseph.

Magruder was an outstanding athlete for his entire life. He was a competitive swimmer and tennis player throughout high school and college years, and set records and played on the varsity teams. Later in life, he took up skiing, scuba diving and bicycling, and enjoyed weekend rides and the occasional century ride. He raised his kids to love skiing and the outdoors, and the children and grandchildren are outdoorsmen and women to this day. Magruder wrote two books: An American Life, One Man’s Road to Watergate (1974) and From Power to Peace (1978). His love of reading and politics live on in the next generation as well.

Burial after cremation will take place at Arlington National Cemetery, and a private family service will be held at that time. Because of his work for Habitat for Humanity in Lexington KY, donations in his memory can be sent to that organization at https://www.habitat.org/cd/giving/one/donate.aspx  

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michael barrett
   Posted Fri May 16, 2014
Go with the Grace of God to his Loving Arms , you Passed the Human Test .

Kevin May
   Posted Fri May 16, 2014
Jeb was my next door neighbor in downtown Columbus, Ohio, and he was my friend. Wonderful memories. God bless you, brother. Enjoy those streets of gold.

Brian Beachum
   Posted Sat May 17, 2014
Dear Magruder Family,

I am sorry to hear of Jeb's passing away. I met Jeb many yers ago when he worked with the Wyckoff Baptist team with a fundraising project for a church expansion.

While I was impressed by his skills and knowledge I was most touched by his testimony and the way he interacted with and cared for people. He was warm and caring and he will always be one of the most interesting people I have met in my live.

May your memories also be of the good times and may God bless you all.


Rev. Dr. Andrew McDonald
   Posted Sun May 18, 2014
It was a joy to get to know Jeb when he was our consultant at Westminster Church in Lincoln, NE. He was wise, insightful, warm and funny. His leadership guided us in raising over 3 million dollars, and the work from that project will continue on for the next hundred years. His work was tremendously helpful. More than that, I appreciated his spending time talking and guiding me as an older pastor to a younger one. I especially liked his statement to me when I asked about why he went to seminary. He said, "Because I wanted to figure out how 34 basically decent people could do something so dumb" (Watergate). I said, "Well, did you figure it out?" He said, "Yes. Reinhold Niebuhr, in "Children of Light, Children of Darkness." That was one of the most important books of political theory in the last century, yet it has been forgotten. That Jeb saw its importance spoke to me of his insight and wisdom. I truly enjoyed him, and felt blessed to spend time on the journey of faith with him. He was a blessing to me and our whole church. He will be missed and warmly remembered.
Rev. Andrew McDonald, Westminster Church, Lincoln, NE.

Ernest Myers, Jr.
   Posted Sun May 18, 2014
Please receive my deepest condolences to each member of the family in the passing of Jeb.
It was my privilege and honor to know him personally while we both served as consultants with RSI. While I had interest and questions concerning his involvement with the Nixon administration, I soon realized the better story was Jeb's own life. He was so open as an individual. It was a pleasure to share meals with him and hear of the fullness of his experiences and his splendid discernment on all that was happening around him in that moment.
Please know of my prayers that each of you will experience the power and presence of our God at this moment.
Ernest Myers, Jr.

Wes and Patty Smith
   Posted Mon May 19, 2014
Jeb was our pre-marriage advisor at First Community Church in Columbus. He married us in a beautiful ceremony at the home of Patty's sister on 12/19/87 but to our regret, we soon lost touch with him. He was a fine man and a good counselor to us. We have enjoyed 27 years of happiness in no small measure to the life lessons he taught us. We miss Jeb and are grateful he was a part of our lives. May his family find peace and pride in knowing he was such a special person in so many ways.

millard m riggs jr
   Posted Tue May 20, 2014

Bill Johnson
   Posted Tue June 03, 2014
To Jeb's Family:
I am saddened by the news of Jeb's death. I first met Jeb when he came to First Presbyterian Church in Burlingame, CA. He found out about our Church Biking Group and joined it. He was starting a Bethel Teacher's Training Group and asked me to join. I refused, but he persisted and challenged me to experience this bit of Faith Building. I joined and it became the beginning of my Faith Journey. I found Christ through that Course. When it was completed, we received a document. By that time, Jeb had moved to Columbus, but I sent it to him and he signed it. The Group continued with its other teachers for 20 years, and continued my Faith Journey. When he was in Lexington, he invited our group to join him and Patti for Worship and the Kentucky Derby.
Jeb was a compassionate and moral leader during his short time in Burlingame and I will always remember his enthusiasm, wit, counsel and leadership.
I pray for solace for his family at this time and feel assured that he is now with the Father.
Yours in Christ,
Bill Johnson

Justin Magruder
   Posted Wed March 04, 2015
Dad, we miss you...rest in peace! Love, Jus

Mark Barwise
   Posted Tue August 25, 2015
To Jeb's family,
I was saddened to hear of the loss of your father. I always loved talking with your dad- especially about politics and the latest news stories. I think of your dad often and always with fond memories.

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