John D. McKeown ’82

John D. McKeown (Sailor John), 61, of Tampa, Florida, passed peacefully in his sleep on July 20, 2021. He was born in New Haven to the late Nancy (Downing) and James E. McKeown.

John grew up in Northford, CT with a very active youth, playing little league baseball, midget football and he also played the fife in the Minute Men fife and drum corp. He attended Xavier High School with a focus on Track and Football. College life was spent at Maine Maritime Academy in Castine Maine, he enjoyed another 4 years of playing football and graduated with a bachelors degree in Marine Engineering.

He had a number of exciting jobs that took him all over the world, as would say, he has sailed every sea. He was the marine engineer aboard the Saga 9, Charles Payson’s yacht – owner of the Mets MLB and Louisiana Tug Boat Co. He served as a reserve officer Lieutenant (JG) United States Navy and shipped with O.R.I and TECO Ocean Shipping Inc.

John loved all sports and attended as many Tampa Buccaneers, Rays and Lightening games as possible. He had many interests and his most favorites were The Patriots, Boston Red Socks and Cooking. If you were friends with John on Facebook, you were entertained with photos of his many creative culinary dishes, coming up with new ways to use bacon was a favorite. His friends raved about Sailor John’s famous mushrooms and stuffed clams, also the two dishes he always made for the family when home in CT.

John was the beloved brother of James (Anne) McKeown, Milford, CT, Maura Erin McKeown, Hamden, CT and Nadeen McKeown, West Haven CT. He leaves behind two nieces who were the light of his life, Brennan McKeown (GodDaughter) NYC, New York and Tiernan McKeown, Cincinnati Ohio. He will be missed dearly by his Aunt Joan Connor, West Haven CT. He had many beloved cousins and a wonderful community of friends from CT and Tampa FL. The family has heartfelt thanks to Johns Tampa family, with extra special thanks to Bill Poole, Amber and Derek Vacura, Lisa Pack and Chris Haney, your kindness and generosity will always be remembered. There are countless family and friends who have reached out and we are truly appreciative. Celebration of life mass September 11, 2021 at 10:55 am, Our Lady of Victory Parish, 300 Capt. Thomas Blvd., West Haven, CT 06516 (203) 934-6357.  Please wear masks for the safety of all in attendance. Burial will be private. A Celebration of John’s life will take place at a later date when it is safe to congregate and celebrate