Richard Earl Kearney was born July 23, 1934 to Doris Nave and Fabian Earl Kearney in Tulsa, Okla. Our dear father surrendered his soul to Jesus on Dec. 2nd, 2020 at the age of 86 and joined his beloved wife of 62 years, Mary Sheila Kearney, in heaven. Richard was the youngest of five siblings (Mary June, Mickey, Rodger, Joanne and Richard) and grew up at the end of the Great Depression and during World War 2. The Kearney household was devastated in 1945, when their beloved Rodger and big brother to Richard was killed in action in Germany. This loss had a deep impact on my father and something that stayed with him for the rest of his life. He attended Marquette High School and lettered in basketball and football. He was the Marquette Meteors’ star running back and out of a classic single wing offense often led them to victories such as the time he scored four touchdowns in a 66 to 7 romp over Holy Family. He graduated High school in 1952 and headed to Marquette University in Wisconsin, where he majored in Electrical Engineering. It was there that he fell in love with an Ohio girl named Mary Sheila Kearney. They married on June 8, 1958 in Bay Village, Ohio, at St. Raphael’s Catholic Church and shortly thereafter moved to Piqua, Ohio, to start their life together. It was during this time in Piqua, that they had their first three children Brian, David and Jodie. Sheila ran the household and helped raise the three kids as Richard established a career in electrical engineering. In 1963, Richard accepted a chief engineer position and helped establish the Slaughter Co. in Ardmore. It was here in South Central Oklahoma that Richard and Sheila spent the next 57 years as parishioners of St. Mary’s Catholic Church, raising their three children and welcoming their final child Patrick in 1973. Time for the family was always focused on faith and the events at the Catholic Church, but the family also spent time at Lake Murray boating and swimming, visiting the pool at Dornick Hills Country Club and attending Ardmore Football games. Richard was very active with the Boy Scouts and was the Scout Master for St. Mary’s Troop 112 from 1970 – 1974. An Eagle Scout himself, he proudly looked on as his three sons Brian, David and Patrick received their Eagle Scout ranks. He often spoke of the back-packing trip Troop 112 took to Philmont, New Mexico in 1974. Golf was a passion that he pursued his entire life and he was always grateful for the time he spent with his friends on Wednesday afternoons at the local golf courses in Ardmore. His dedication to his church and faith was his spiritual anchor and was a daily dedication for him in life. After health complications, he retired in 1991 and dedicated his time to the Catholic organization St Vincent De Paul. He and Sheila worked together to bring needed aid to the less fortunate in the Ardmore area. Pope Benedict XVI recognized Richard and Sheila’s service to the church by awarding them the Benemerenti Medal in 2005. Richard was also a proud Grandpa of nine beautiful grand kids. They brought him and Sheila great joy and happiness in the later years of their lives.
Richard was a warm and kind man who loved his family and would give the best hugs. Outside of his family, he could be hard to get to know, but he would do anything for someone if asked. He was a terrible driver and he never once washed his car or vacuumed the inside. He could design and build the most complicated model train sets, but admittedly was undone by his terrible carpentry. He loved Oklahoma football and witnessed all four of his children graduate proud Sooners. His character and absolute devotion to his family are an example that his family tries to live up to everyday. We are comforted that he is now free of the limitations he endured in the later years of his life. He was always aware when his family came to see him. The tears in his eyes communicated to you how much he loved you. We will miss you and love you forever.
Richard is survived by his four children Brian Kearney of Phoenix, David Kearney and his wife Andrea of Buena Vista, Colo., Jodie Austin and her husband Thomas of Ardmore, and Patrick Kearney and his wife Candace of Rossmoor, Calif.; his grandchildren Lauren Kearney, Will Douglass and his wife Haylee, Kristen Kearney, Ryan Kearney and his wife Annie, Elizabeth Douglass, Katie Kearney, Brook Kearney, Grace Kearney, Audrey Kearney, Rachel Austin, Lauren Austin, and Nathan Austin; great-grandson Rowen Griffin; along with numerous nieces and nephews.
Funeral services are scheduled for 10 a.m. Monday, Dec. 7, 2020, at St. Mary’s Catholic Church in Ardmore with Rev. Kevin Ratterman officiating. Please Note: This will be a COVID conscious service.
His three sons, Brian, David and Patrick: his grandsons, Will Douglass and Ryan Kearney, son-in-law, Thomas Austin and son-in-law to be Brian Greisman will serve as pallbearers.
Online condolences can be made at www.craddockfuneralhome.com
In lieu of flowers or gifts, please consider donating to St. Vincent DePaul Catholic Charity 2939 12th Ave. S. Minneapolis, MN 55407.
Posted online on December 06, 2020