With sadness but appreciation for a life well-lived in generous service to others, the family of Dr. John T. F. Keohane, Sr., announces his death in Edmonton on January 29, 2022.
John is survived by his wife of 67 years, Kathleen; six children: Michael (Weimin), Susan, John (Isabelle), David (Glenda), Mark (Krista), and Peter (Fiona); 9 grandchildren: Jessica, John (Kirstin), Patrick, Siobhan, Ronan, Neeve, Kathleen, Conor, and Mark; his sisters: Martina, and Clare; and sisters in law: Marita and Patricia. John was predeceased by his parents: Thomas and Bridget; and siblings: Rae, Rev. Father Eddie, and Marie.
John is fondly remembered by his family as “a man for all seasons.” His talents were varied and diverse in nature and he made his scope of influence better for others through his efforts. While growing up in Ireland John put his passion for carpentry and athletics to work by building furniture for his family’s summer cottage, and developing skills as a gifted football (soccer) player. He graduated first in his class in medicine from the University College Dublin in 1951, before traveling to England to complete his specialty in Otolaryngology. While engaged in his education and training John captained UCD A.F.C.; honing skills in leadership and service that made him a person who always preferred to contribute rather than speak to his efforts.
John’s immigration to Canada placed him in a position where he needed to be a self-starter, adaptive to opportunity, and dedicated to a spirit of independence in caring for his family of six children. In the 1960s, he pioneered inner ear micro-surgery which would lead to a long-lasting relationship with the Royal Alexandra Hospital in the City of Edmonton. Through building a medical practice that spanned more than 40 years, family members remember John retreating to his den after supper and a day’s work; only to know that he would be listening to a beautiful opera or symphony while reading the latest medical journal.
John’s passion for acquiring knowledge and experiences to be at his best was most notably revealed through his efforts to acquire a Fellowship in Otolaryngology. Upon engaging in further post-graduate medical education and practice, John wrote and obtained his fellowship with the Royal College of Surgeons of Canada. The rigor of this training and credentialing enabled him to enhance the quality of his professional practice to the benefit of his patients.
John’s most cherished past-time was the game of golf where he was always passionate about improving on his handicap. It would be difficult for anyone to improve on his record for acquiring holes in one; a feat which in the end, numbered at 9 aces. For the few times that our dad engaged in competition, he typically demonstrated success: being a winner of the Academy of Medicine Golf Tournament, and the Club Championship at the Royal Mayfair Golf and Country Club in the Super Senior Division.
Most importantly, by partnering with his wife Kathleen in caring for their daughter, Susan, involvement with Mitchener Centre in Red Deer became an important investment of their time, treasure, and talent. Family members especially thank John and Kathleen for this special dedication and devotion to their beloved sister. At John’s request, his resting place will reveal the statement “love one another, as I have loved you.” Thank you, Pappa John, for leaving all who you have touched with a lifetime of reminders of how to bear witness to the commandment that you valued most.
A Private Funeral Mass for immediate family members will be celebrated at St. Joseph’s Basilica in Edmonton. Interment will follow at the St. Anthony Cemetery. Knowing that John’s donations in life were extensive, no flowers and donations are requested at this time.