Classmates fondly remember Mac, short in stature but at the core of the Nassoons as they serenaded under Blair Arch on balmy evenings. Music director for more than two years, he loved rearranging old favorites.
His career focused on gas-turbine and rocket propulsion, developing models to predict engine performance. Mac was talented at assembling research teams from government, industry, and academia. At Vanderbilt, he championed undergraduate research and was director of graduate studies in mechanical engineering.
At Taft School, he joined every musical event, but his direction shifted in 1957 when Russia launched the Sputnik satellite. Mac wrote a thesis at Princeton on combustion of metals, graduated with honors, and joined Cap. Five years after graduation he earned a Ph.D. in aeronautical engineering, then taught at Purdue. From 1982 to 1987 he was Hess Professor of Combustion in Mechanical Engineering at Drexel. Once he joined Vanderbilt in 1988 he returned to studying music, especially opera. In retirement he took a deep interest in Civil War history.
Mac is survived by two sisters and several nieces and nephews.