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John W. Keenan

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John W. Keenan
Lowell, MA native, WWll Vet

John William Keenan, who had an undeniable passion for life and an even larger personality, passed away peacefully in Auburn, CA on 6/28/14 with loving family by his side.

He was born in Lowell, MA in December 1927, one of 8 children. John joined the Army during WWII, and served in the medical corps in Korea. He had three children from his first marriage to Phyllis Scott: John Scott, Colleen, and Shirley. In 1957, John married Eileen O'Brien, and moved to Southern California. They soon welcomed the birth of their son Kelly, and John began working for Van Waters and Rogers. John and Eileen lived in Pasadena, CA until retiring to Cool, CA in 1989. He was preceded in death by his beloved wife Eileen in 2002, as well as son John Scott (killed in action in Vietnam in 1970), and siblings Frances, Mary, William and Charles.

John was always a gentleman, and he always had an opinion - which he readily shared. He was very proud of all his children and grandchildren, and never lost his Massachusetts accent. He was also proud of his Irish heritage. He loved to play golf with the HOGGS, and was a lifetime member of SIRS. He and Eileen loved to travel the US for months at a time in their RV, and John always appreciated a good story or a good bargain. He had a life-long love affair with pickled herring, finnan haddie, fig squares, and Elliot's hot dogs.

John is survived by his children, Kelly (wife, Chris, children, Alanna, Conor), Shirley (husband, Ron), Colleen (husband, Brett, children, Michelle, Suzanne, Colleen); son Scott's children, Kelley and Scott, and siblings, James, Robert and Martha Ann. He will be remembered by many as quite a character, and by great grandchildren, in-laws, and grandchildren's friends who fondly thought of him as "Grandpa".

A memorial service will be held at St. Teresa of Avila Church in Auburn, CA on July 23 at 11 am An interment service will be held at St. Patrick's Cemetery in Lowell, MA at a later date in the fall. In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made to Senior Care Solutions, 8910 Sunset Ave., Suite B, Fair Oaks, CA 95628.
Published in Lowell Sun on July 13, 2014
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