George Fifield McKeage (1928 - 2014)

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  • "George was always a gentleman and a pleasure to speak with..."
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  • "Dear Diana, We were saddened to learn of your father's..."
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George Fifield McKeage, age 85, passed away on Friday, January 3, 2014 at his home on Lake St. in Concord, N.H.

The son of Edward and Bernice (Fifield) McKeage, George was born in Concord, N.H. on November 11, 1928, and grew up in the house his father built on Lake St. He graduated from Concord High School in 1947 and received a teaching degree from Keene State College in 1951. Following graduation George joined the U.S. Air Force and was stationed in the Philippines where he maintained aircraft. It was during this time that he developed an interest in flying model airplanes that continued for the rest of his life. Following his discharge in 1955, George returned to New Hampshire and taught Industrial Arts at several area high schools. In 1966 he was one of the first teachers hired for the newly-formed New Hampshire Technical Institute in Concord. He left this position after several years to earn a Master's degree in Education from the State University of New York at Oswego and a Certificate of Advanced Graduate Studies from the University of Illinois. Following this he taught mechanical drafting and design at Tidewater Community College in Portsmouth, Va. He left teaching in 1981 and returned to New Hampshire where he was a specialized machinist at Hoyt Electric in Penacook until his retirement.

He is survived by his wife of 56 years, Marilyn (Bemis) McKeage; daughter Diana Lighthall, her husband Peter, and granddaughter Emily of Hopkinton, N.H.; daughter Heather Mitchell, her husband Derk, and grandchildren Alden and Lily of Hopkinton, N.H.; dear friends Ralph and Helen Dwire of Lyndeborough, N.H.; cousins; nephews; and nieces. He was predeceased by his parents and his sister, Esther Louise Richardson. George met his future wife at a square dance in Bradford, N.H. in 1955. He was impressed by her beauty, and she had been hoping he would ask her dance. They married on June 9, 1957, and shared a love of travel, music, and books which they have passed on to their children and grandchildren. He was a lifelong member of West Congregational Church where served in many capacities, including choir member, handyman, committee member, and trustee. He was a member of several local model airplane clubs, and loved building and flying model airplanes at Elm Brook Park. The son of a carpenter and a school teacher, George was an ingenious problem solver and a natural teacher. He could figure out and fix anything, and invariably had just the right tool to do it. He enjoyed reading, jigsaw puzzles, the Sunday comics, and Sudoku puzzles. He loved blueberry picking, flying kites at the beach, and deep sea fishing with his college roommate Ralph Dwire. Above all, he loved spending time with his family. He never missed one of his grandchildren's school performances and was an enthusiastic supporter of his grandson's robotics team. George had a generous heart and a kind word for everyone. His gentle ways, the sound of his voice, and the bright gleam in his eyes will be greatly missed by his family and all who knew him.

A memorial service will be held on Saturday, January 11, 2014 at 2:00 pm at West Congregational Church, 499 N. State Street in Concord. Memorial donations may be made in George's memory to: West Congregational Church, 499 N. State St., Concord, NH 03301, or a .
Published in The Concord Monitor on Jan. 7, 2014
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