Michael Joseph Keane, 77

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PORTLAND — Michael Joseph Keane, 77,  died Feb. 8, at his home in Portland after a brief battle with cancer, surrounded by family, relatives and friends.

Keane was born March 23, 1936, in Polleeny, County Galway, Ireland to Thomas and Annie Keane. He was born the seventh of 11 children.

He attended schools in his village then went on to Spiddal Vocational Technical School where he studied carpentry and mechanical drawing. When he was 17 he worked at the Galway Post Office, and later moved to London to work in construction and carpentry. Keane was a master woodworker with impeccable attention to detail. He enjoyed the challenge of reconstruction repairs. He loved antique clocks and taught himself to repair the mechanics.

While living in London he met Patricia McDonnell who would become his wife. They were married in Galway City on June 20, 1962. They lived in London until 1964 then moved to the U.S. and settled in Boston, Mass. They relocated to Portland in 1968 and became U.S. citizens in 1969.

In 1973, he and a group of Irish friends living in the Portland area started the Irish American Club, and he served as the president from 1978 to 1980.

Keane was an avid reader and enjoyed keeping up with politics and current events. He could be found reading anything from a dictionary to biographies to historical novels. He and Patricia also loved to travel and took trips to Ireland, England, Florida and Israel.

His true love was his family.

He is survived by his wife of 52 years, Patricia; son, Ronald Keane and wife, Susan; daughter, Shalene Keane Johnson, of Portland and her children, Kaydie, William and Chelsea; son, David Keane and his daughter, Kodelia; siblings, Thomas Keane, Margaret Keane Hayden, of Falmouth, Catherine Keane O’Connor and Anne Keane Bourke, of Portland; as well as 26 nieces and nephews.

He was predeceased by his parents, Thomas and Annie; sister, Maura; brothers, Bartley, Sean, Padraic, Peter and Martin.

Visiting hours were held Feb. 11, at A.T. Hutchins Funeral Home, Portland, followed by a Mass of Christian Burial at St. Pius X Church, Portland. Interment followed in Calvary Cemetery, South Portland. 

In lieu of flowers, donation may be made to, Hospice of Southern Maine, 180 U.S. Route 1, #1, Scarborough, ME 04074.

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