Family and friends may visit on Sunday September 13th from 1pm to 4pm. If you would like to attend, please reserve your space here: https://app.planhero.com/gatherings/6647-cecelia-reed-keehn-calling-hours
Cecelia Reed Keehn, 79, of Woodstock, NY, passed away Sunday, September 6, 2020 at HealthAlliance Hospital - Broadway Campus in Kingston, NY. She was born November 18, 1940 in Pottsville, PA, daughter of the late Gordon and Dorothy (Phillips) Reed. Cece was married to her husband of 58 years, G. Thomas Keehn, they wed on 12/16/1961.
She received her Bachelor's degree from Lebanon Valley College in PA, and her Master's Degree in Music from Westchester State University in PA. She also studied at the Oberlin Conservatory of Music. Cece worked for the Kingston School District as a Music Teacher and taught music privately for over 55 years, right up until her death. She was the Director of Music at the Evangelical Lutheran Church of the Redeemer for over fifty years (twenty-five years as Youth Choir Director and twenty-seven years as Senior Choir Director), during this time she produced many productions, including the opera, Amahl and the Night Visitors. She was also Director of Music at Ulster County Community College for many years. In addition she was the beloved soloist at Congregation Emanuel of the Hudson Valley, where she was known for her performances of Avinu Malkeinu during the High Holy Days.
Cece was Past President of the Kingston Musical Society, member of the Woodstock Chamber Players, a featured soloist with several groups including; Camerata Chorale, Ulster Choral Society, Ars Choralis, Hudson Valley Philharmonic, and the Woodstock Chamber Orchestra. She also performed as a Big Band singer for fifty years, ten of which she presented a floor show at various Catskill Resorts. Cece enjoyed gardening, cooking, and feeding the local wildlife at her home in Woodstock.
She is survived by her husband, Tom Keehn of Woodstock, her children, Geoffrey Keehn and his wife Alicia of Kinnelon, NJ, and Timothy Keehn and his wife Jean of Parma, OH, her grandchildren, Gabriel Keehn and Porter Keehn, her grandpets, Teddy, Louie, Dizzy, and Sparky, her brother in law, David Keehn and his wife Maureen of Lake Katrine, as well as several other extended family members. In addition to her parents she is predeceased by her siblings, Gordon D. Reed, III and Nancy Newkirk.
Arrangements entrusted to Keyser Funeral & Cremation Service, 326 Albany Ave., Kingston, NY 12401, where family and friends may visit on Sunday September 13th from 1pm to 4pm. If you would like to attend, please reserve your space here: https://app.planhero.com/gatherings/6647-cecelia-reed-keehn-calling-hours
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Evangelical Lutheran Church of the Redeemer, 104 Wurts St., Kingston, NY 12401 (please note "Organ Fund" in the memo line). A tribute for Cece can be found at www.KeyserFuneralService.com, where you may leave memories and expressions of sympathy for her family.
"It's hard to accept that we will not be hearing Cece's lovely voice again--she brought so much beauty, life and energy to whatever she undertook, whether it was leading the choir at Redeemer, or officiating and performing for a Musical Society program. My prayers & condolences go to her family, especially Tom, Jeff and Tim. We will miss her very much."
"Mrs Keehn always made choir practice fun for my friends and I. I will always remember her as a trusted and competent advisor. She will always live in my memory, as such a positive human being loved by all that met her."
Dear Tom and Family, so saddened and shocked by Cece's sudden passing. I will always carry fond memories of her at Ulster Chamber Music Series meetings and concerts. She greeted everyone with a smile and was a real people person. May her memory be for a blessing!"
"What a great pleasure and how fortuitous it was to meet Cece and you when I moved to the area six years ago. It was very gratifying to play for Cece when she sang.....music was a world we loved,understood and shared together. But most importantly, I will remember her for kindness and willingness to give of herself to help others and share her gifts with the wider community. She will be deeply missed!"
"I sat stunned looking at the text from Gretchen telling me of Cece's passing. and then suddenly a gift! Clear as a bell I heard Cece's laughter all the way from the up the scale giggle to the head thrown back peals. And then the music began, " With a voice of singing declare ye this and let it be heard! Hallelujah! What a gift she was to us all! She helped so many of us both find and strengthen our voices , learn to work in harmony, hone our listening skills and practice till we got it right were lessons that went well beyond the glorious music and helped us build our lives. And even when we didn't quite pull off the sound she was hoping for, there was always the great smile after the cutoff beat which made us want to try harder the next time. Her willingness to serve , her great energy and open heart were a great expression of her faith. And we who have had the joy of knowing and loving our Cece will carry her on. Tom, Geoff, Tim and family, thank you for sharing her with so many of us. Know that she lives on in my heart. With love, Elsa"
"We never know the time we are given
we never know the fleeting magic of our lives.
All we can do is hold tight
to those we are lucky enough to share it with,
breathe deep with appreciation,
and stare out
with perfect wonder.
I am sorry to hear about your loss. You and CeCe were two of the first people I met when I arrived in Kingston. You and your family are in my thoughts and prayers. I hope peace finds you soon.
"Dear Tom and family,
We were deeply saddened to learn of Cecelia's passing. Our thoughts and prayers are with you all.
- Marisa and Fran"
"Dear Tom, Geoff, Alicia, Gabe, Porter, Tim and Jean--Paul and I were shocked and saddened to learn of Cece's passing. Memories flooded back to all the times we spent together, especially those Florida trips with band and choir, and that trip years ago to Vermont. Although we didn't get to see each other often, when we did it was as if we saw each other just yesterday. You, Tom, and Cece were wonderful mentors to Paul when he first came to Miller and continued to help him along the way. Our kids, too, were sad to hear the news as she touched all of them through the years. Please know that all our thoughts and prayers go out to you, Tom, and your family at this difficult time. May God Bless Cecelia and keep her close to him.
"Dear Tom and Family, Larry and I are so sorry to hear about Cece's passing. She was such a beautiful person and a gifted musician. Our deepest sympathy is with the whole family that your treasured memories may help ease your pain and bring you comfort and peace. Love, Arlene and Larry "
"Dear Tom, Tim and Geoff and family: Words cannot fully express the sadness that Steve, Elinora and I feel about Cece's passing. We have so many memories at Redeemer and outside Redeemer with you. We learned so much from her choir directing. As a soprano, I always admired her brilliant voice. The love Tom and Cece had for each other was amazing. I thank God that Cece and Pat Leitherer came up to us that day in 1993 and asked us to join the choir. May God's peace be with you during this sad time. Sandy and Steve"
"Dear Tom and family, please accept my deepest sympathy. I am so sorry to hear about Cecelia?s passing. May God help you through this sad time. Sending my love, Marilyn Bitonte"
"It is so hard to believe that after 50 years of friendship, we will not get the chance to be with Cece again. As I look back on those years, I have wonderful memories of travel, get togethers, and since we moved to North Carolina 38 years ago, it has always been a priority to not only keep in touch, but to get together every year or so, most recently, in Florida this past winter for a week. Our prayers and best wishes for all the Keens. Please remember that we are always here for you."
"How to begin a tribute to a woman who loved the Lord and honored him through her incredible voice and always overflowing heart. Did I mention her smile- how I loved her so. Geoff was my brother and she my second Mom. Memories run from visiting her Moms home in PA ( I thought it was a palace) her water skiing in North Carolina running up on a bed of sea shells, fixing my hair after my sister gave me a box cut, many years of our families Xmas caroling, leading us bunch of misfits in Youth Choir, singing at my wedding, and on and on. Thank you Cece for your love and encouragement. Say hi to my Mom. I am so looking forward to seeing you with the choir of angels in heaven"
May the Angels lead you into paradise: may the martyrs receive you at your coming,
and lead you into the holy city, Jerusalem. May the choir of Angels receive you,
and with Lazarus, who once was poor, may you have everlasting rest.
Tom, Tim and Geoff,
May you find peace at this time. I will always remember fondly the kindness your family has shown mine over many years. This community grieves with you, and is here for you.
"Cece, you were one in a million for sure! The voice of an angel and the spirit of God Himself, the triumphant leader and master of all who performed under your guidance. When I think of you, I am instantly transported to Redeemer Lutheran Church. It's Christmas Eve Candle Lit Service. The lighting is dim, just the big beautiful Christmas Tree with White Lights and White and Gold Peace Doves, the candles held by all in the pews, and you singing " Stille Nacht", A Capella, and in German. Brought me to tears EACH and EVERY time. I'm tearing up as I write this tribute to you. You and Tom were such a beautiful and blessed couple, forever sharing the music from Heaven above. May you be soaring with the Angels my friend, and may all in your circle come to eventually find comfort in sweet memories. RIP
You will surely be missed,
Connie Oehler Tomlinson "
"Dear Tom and Family,
I just want you to know how sad I am for you! You two were role models for portraying family values of happiness, fun and respect. I always enjoyed seeing you and sharing the love for music that you and CeCe had! I bet she's signing up her fellow angels for Voice I or maybe II or III if she happened to be their teacher! RIP CeCe! With love and prayers! Jean"
"A beautiful soul gone too soon. Time to celebrate the life of one who touched all whom she came in contact with. Will always keep that beautiful smike in my memories. Love and prayers to the Keehn family. The Davidson family"
"To my sweet Cece,"Mrs. Keehn", fellow soprano, college,and private,Voice teacher,mentor,and most of all,my friend....words are hard to find to express the shock and sadness of your passing.. Everyone whose live's were touched by you,are still trying to make sense of this all...For all the memories,concerts,private lessons,and private chats,you have left your mark in my heart,and it will remain there for the rest of my life,..To Tom,and the family,I send you strength,positive thoughts,and energy,and peace to your heart's!! My love to you all,and S.I.P. my beautiful Cece...Heaven must have needed a new angel to sing...Love you,and will miss you terribly?
"Tom and Family,
Carol and I, along with our boys, cannot begin to grieve enough for your loss. We have such a collective history. I know that your strength and faith will carry you. Please know that we are here for you no matter what.
Nick, Carol, Nick and Ian Avossa"
"It is so painful not to be there with you. Know that we are with you in thoughts and prayers. I don?t know where to begin to say how wonderful Cece was. I thought about her a week ago when my feet were cold and I remembered the time in Saratoga when we wrapped our feet in Kleenex to keep warm. I think about her as our goodwill ambassador to China when she burst into song and the Chinese loved it. So many memories.... Most of all, I know how she loved her family with the ferociousness of a lioness. And, Tom, you two had a marriage where love knew no bounds?the example that should be presented to all young couples marrying today. Blessings to all the Keehns?. Cece, go in peace my dear friend."
"I will always remember seeing Cecelia in the halls of UCCC in the Theater/Music wing. She had a light that made The concrete space come to life and even though I was not her student, as a young woman it was a lesson I have never forgotten. Be brave, be confident, be kind and always go forward with grace. To hear her sing and watch her perform was a Master Class. Thank you Cecelia. "
"Dear Tom and Family,
Dale and I are so sad to here of Ceece passing. We have many fond memories of her from Redeemer.She was my Choir director and also my children. Thought and prayers are with you during this difficult time. Donna and Dale"
"Dear Mr. Keehn, Tim, Geoff and family,
My most sincere sympathy on the loss of your beautiful CeCe. She impacted so many lives with her vibrant, loving and joyful manner. I will forever be grateful to have known her and cherish all the memories of her, which impacted my life, greatly and for the better. God bless you all. We send our love and sincere condolences. Angela Jamieson, Ginny and Tom"
"Dear Tom ,
Words can't describe how shocked and saddened I was by the news. The Garner family sends their love, thoughts and prayers to you at this time. As the co-founders of our KHS Band Program, Cece and you were an inspiration and the finest mentors a young teacher could possibly have. God Bless Both of You in this tough time.
Steve Garner and Family"
"Dear Tom I will always remember Cece, my friend and roommate
I am truly heartbroken
Love to you and children
Marjorie Apple "
"I was terribly saddened to hear of Cece's passing. I have so many wonderful memories of performances with her - highlights include Villa-Lobos' Bachianas Brasilieras #5 aria, and a unique arrangement of "Just One Of Those Things" for a WCO benefit, plus of course Xmas eves on the Woodstock village green. Those and other performances, and our teaching together at SUNY Ulster, and traveling with Ars Choralis, all enhanced by the sterling person she was. My deepest condolences to Tom and family.
"Remembering our first real date was caroling with the Keehns over fifty years ago. Thankful for the hospitality then as well as the friendship we shared over the years. Favorite memories include the music at Redeemer. We have been blessed having shared your gifts to the glory to God. Peace be with you.
Will and Paula Daum"
"When I think of Cece, I think of Lions club band playing ?My Favorite Things?. Donna and I are heartbroken to learn the news. Travel to NY from NC is difficult right now, we will remember Cece always with Tom and the band. Your voice will be with us always."
"Dear Tom, Tim, and Geoff, Thoughts, prayers and love are with you all at this time. May you find comfort in knowing others do share in your loss this day. Remember that life has only changed not ended. Our God who love and sustained her in this live now holds her in his arms forever. God bless you all in the days ahead. I will remember some very special moments of a very special lady. Blessings. Nancy and Ron"