Nature 14

Jason Philip McKinley Senior

April 7, 1982 ~ May 7, 2022 (age 40)


Jason Philip McKinley Senior was born on April 7, 1982, to Pamela Ruth Scherger and Kent Richard Senior in Burlingame, California. He grew up in Arlington, Virginia attending McKinley Elementary School, Swanson Middle School, and Yorktown High School, and spent a great portion of his time in the television production studio in the Arlington Career Center. Jason was an active Boy Scout, and achieved the highest rank of Eagle. He graduated high school in 2000 and earned his Associate Degree in Culinary Arts from The International Culinary School at the Art Institute of Washington in 2008.

Jason had a strong work ethic beginning at the age of 15 when he balanced school and work in Arlington, Virginia, and worked at Portobello's, an American Cafe. His externship at Casa Oaxaca in Washington, D.C. solidified his passion for cooking what he wanted to do for a career. While obtaining his Culinary Arts degree, he met his future wife Dolly Goyal and shortly after graduating in 2008, he left his family and friends to live with her in San Jose, California. Jason worked hard to establish a career in California, beginning as a cafe manager at Panera Bread, then moving back into restaurants as a manager at Village California Bistro and Wine Bar. 

The Bay Area provided more opportunities for Jason as he moved into the world of corporate dining, securing management positions in Restaurants Unlimited, Inc., Kincaid’s Restaurant in Burlingame, and Life Technologies through Guckenheimer in South San Francisco. Jason even provided healthy cooking classes for teens at local libraries in Santa Clara County. During that time, Jason and Dolly’s love story continued evolving and in 2012, they married in Watsonville, California. 

In 2016, Jason’s career shifted to focus on improving meals for students in public schools when he joined the Fremont Union High School District as cafeteria manager for Lynbrook High School. Jason developed nutritious scratch-made meals and menus for students, increasing participation in the school meal program and creating excitement throughout campus. The culinary experience he offered was recognized by students who featured him in the school newspaper on a few occasions. Jason also worked for the Campbell Union High School District and later, the Redwood City School District where he served elementary-aged students. Jason was well-loved by students, staff, and faculty. 

When he wasn’t experimenting with new recipes at home, Jason spent his time mountain biking through various forests, mountains, and deserts in northern California, Washington, Arizona, Nevada, and Utah. He was also a musician, having played in the band, “Those Less Fortunate” in high school and would often jam with Maritza, his beloved Stratocaster. Music was his safe haven, and while he enjoyed different genres including ska, punk, rock, and indie, “emo” was his favorite. Another one of Jason’s pastimes was traveling and exploring different countries and the U.S. with his wife.

Jason passed away peacefully in Sebring, Florida on May 7, 2022, from end-stage liver disease, with Dolly by his side. He is survived by his wife, family, and loving canine, Lois Lane.

Memorial services will be held at Darling & Fischer Chapel of the Hills in Los Gatos, CA on June 11, 2022. If you cannot attend in person, the service will be livestreamed here: 


If prompted for a PIN please enter : 832-408

Flowers may be purchased in his memory or in lieu of flowers, donations can be sent to FoodCorps or the National Alliance on Mental Illness.

To send flowers to the family, please visit our floral store.

Memorial Tree
A Memorial Tree was planted for Jason

We are deeply sorry for your loss - the staff at Darling & Fischer Chapel of the Hills

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Memorial Service
June 11, 2022

12:30 PM
Chapel of the Hills
615 No. Santa Cruz Ave.
Los Gatos, CA 95030

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