Monday, May 23, 2016
5:00 PM to 8:00 PM EDT
Life Story Funeral Homes - Betzler
6080 Stadium Drive
Kalamazoo, MI 49009
where a rosary will be recited at 7:30pm followed by a time of sharing.
At the family's request memorial contributions are to be made to those listed below. Please forward payment directly to the memorial of your choice.
Missionaries of Charity
335 East 145th Street
Bronx, NY 10451
Below is the contact information for a florist recommended by the funeral home.
Life Story / Obituary
Patrick Kealy was a gift to all those who were blessed to know him. He had a sparkle in his eye, a joke for everyone he met, and a zest for life that was truly contagious. Patrick was known for his remarkable work ethic and accomplished so much of which to be proud, yet he was a humble man who took nothing for granted. It was easy to see that he was a man of faith, and it was his faith that was the reason for the joy in his heart. A more devoted family man would be hard to find, and Patrick loved nothing more than witnessing his family tree blossom to include the children and grandchildren he treasured more than anything on this side of heaven. Deeply loved, he will be forever missed.
The early 1900s were trying days in Ireland. There was much unrest, and from 1919 through 1921 the nation was deeply entrenched in the Irish War for Independence between the Irish Republican Army and the British security forces there. Despite the political unrest, John and Anne (Byrne) Kealy were filled with great joy as they announced the birth of their eighth child, a boy they named Patrick Joseph, on March 12, 1920, in Kilkenny, Ireland. Raised in Gragara, Jenkinstown, the Kealy family home was a small thatched roof cottage. Patrick’s father was a farmer and carpenter while his mother worked hard alongside him raising the children in their loving home.
Patrick was educated by the Christian Brothers where he learned Gaelic, excelled in math, and had a gift for memorizing poetry. At the age of fourteen, he joined the Pioneer Total Abstinence Association of the Sacred Heart and took the pledge to abstain from alcohol. He kept this pledge for life. Patrick was a hard worker, known for his strong work ethic. At the age of nineteen, he helped build the new family home, complete with a blue slate roof.
As a young man Patrick was ready for all that life had in store, both the joys and the sorrows. He was deeply saddened when his brother Bill died at the age of thirty-three. Tragedy struck for a second time when Patrick’s sister Nellie died just two years later. Shortly thereafter, his sister Mary, who lived in Cleveland called, inviting him to come over to America. “I’ll give it a whirl,” was Patrick’s response, and he came over to the United States aboard the Marine Falcon. He arrived in New York City on July 23, 1947. Patrick made his way to Cleveland and found a job soon after arriving there. He founded a club for hurling, an Irish sport, and enjoyed playing the game with his Irish friends in America. Soon he became a passionate fan of American sports as well, and developed a lifelong love for the Cleveland teams.
In 1956, Patrick accepted a job transfer to Kalamazoo. New and exciting changes were in store for him there. In September of 1958 he was introduced to a young woman named Eileen Klein. From the moment Patrick and Eileen met it was a match made in heaven. With a desire to spend the rest of their lives together they were married on April 23,1960, at St. Michael’s Church in Maple Grove, Michigan.
After a honeymoon in Miami Beach, the young couple settled into a brand new home in Kalamazoo. They were blessed with seven children: Teresa, Mary, John, Ann, Patrick, Shamrock, and Nellie. Patrick worked hard to provide a beautiful home for his wife and children. The Catholic Faith was the foundation of Patrick and Eileen’s life. They exemplified what a sacramental marriage is truly intended to be. They considered it not only a duty, but a privilege and joy to pass on this faith to their seven children. Sundays were spent going to Mass, having a big breakfast together and then often heading to the beach. Patrick also enjoyed fishing with his sons, stopping by the Carousel Ice Cream Shop to treat his family to ice cream cones, and outings to local orchards to pick the fruit that was in season.
Patrick worked hard his whole life. Not one to sit still, after retiring from Stewart Sutherland at the age of eighty, he began working as a greeter at Meijer. This was the perfect job for him since he was so social and outgoing. He also loved to talk politics, and was never hesitant to share his opinion. With equal passion, he enjoyed reciting poems he had memorized as a child, cheering on his favorite teams, and was an avid follower of the stock market, trading up to his final days.
Described as passionate, prayerful, hardworking, and wise, Patrick Kealy was a blessing to everyone he met. He had a fantastic sense of humor and was never at a loss for words. He was expressive with his thoughts and emotions. He was an inspiration to all who knew him.
Patrick Joseph Kealy, of Kalamazoo, died peacefully, May 17, 2016. Patrick’s family includes his wife, Eileen; 7 children: Teresa (Kevin) Gordon, Mary Kealy, John Kealy, Ann Kealy, Patrick (Monika) Kealy, Sr. Mary Marta Kealy M.C. and Nellie (Daniel) Kuebler; 15 grandchildren: Joseph, Michael, Daniel, Kathleen, Timothy, John, Casey, Alex, James, Joseph, Patrick, Carolyn, Brendan, Julia and Elena; and many nieces and nephews. Patrick was preceded in death by 7 siblings: John, Mary, James, Julia, William, Nellie and Martin. Visit with family and friends on Monday from 5 – 8 p.m. at the Life Story Funeral Home, Betzler-Kalamazoo, 6080 Stadium Drive; 375-2900 where a rosary and time of sharing will be held at 7:30 PM. Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated Tuesday 10 a.m. at St. Augustine Cathedral with burial at Mt. Olivet Cemetery. A luncheon will be held in the Cathedral Center. Please visit Patrick’s personal web page at www.lifestorynet.com, where you can archive a favorite memory or photo and sign his online guestbook before coming to the funeral home. Memorial donations may be made to the Missionaries of Charity.