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John Keefe, 82

Funeral services for John Elmer Keefe, 82, of Hutchinson, were conducted Tuesday, Sept. 1, from Vineyard United Methodist Church in Hutchinson. The Rev. Kaye Brandt officiated.

Keefe died Thursday, Aug. 27, 2009, at the Hutchinson Community Hospital in Hutchinson.

Organist was Kay Hayden. Soloist Bonnie Baumetz sang “Amazing Grace.” Congregational hymns were “Joyful, Joyful, We Adore Thee,” “Holy, Holy, Holy” and “Abide With Me.”

Pallbearers were Andrew Boho, John T. Keefe, Thomas Keefe, Daniel Keefe, Donald Keefe Jr. and David Allen. Military honors were by the Hutchinson Memorial Rifle Squad. Interment was in the Oakland Cemetery in Hutchinson.

John Keefe was born Dec. 1, 1926, in Minneapolis to John Marvin and Eleanor (Kottke) Keefe. He was baptized as an infant at Calvary Methodist Church and confirmed in his faith as a youth. He received his education in Minneapolis, and was a graduate of the North High School Class of 1944.

He entered active military service in the U.S. Navy on Dec. 11, 1944, and served his country as aviation ordnanceman 2nd Class during World War II, receiving an honorable discharge on Aug. 9, 1946.

Keefe furthered his education by attending the University of Minnesota, where he was a member of Sigma Nu Fraternity and the Reserve Officers Training Corp. He received a bachelor of science in law from the University of Minnesota in 1949, and his Juris Doctorate degree from the University of Minnesota Law School in June of 1951. He was then admitted to the Minnesota Bar in October 1951.

Keefe later served in the U.S. Air Force Reserve as a legal officer, attaining the rank of captain and receiving an honorable discharge on Feb. 26, 1964.

On Dec. 28, 1950, he was united in marriage to Lillian Haugen at St. Charles Borromeo Church in Minneapolis. This marriage was blessed with three children. They resided in Bloomington until moving to Hutchinson in 1955. They shared 56 years of marriage before Lillian died on Jan. 14, 2007.

He practiced law in Minneapolis for several years as corporate counsel for Investors Diversified Services and the F.W. Woolworth Corporation, until setting up private practice in Hutchinson in 1955.

While residing in Hutchinson, he served as judge of municipal court for the city of Hutchinson and as Hutchinson city attorney.

Thereafter, while involved in private practice, he was elected to several terms as McLeod County Attorney and enjoyed serving as counsel for the Buffalo Creek Watershed District.

He retired from law practice in December 2003.

Keefe was a member of the Vineyard United Methodist Church in Hutchinson. He also was a member of the Hutchinson Jaycees, the Toast Masters, the Kiwanis Association, the Hutchinson American Legion Post 96, the Independent Order of the Oddfellows Lodge 109, the Masonic Temple Lodge 59, the Shriners, the Lester Prairie Sportsmans Club, the Minnesota Historical Society, a life member of the McLeod County Historical Society, the Minnesota Bar Association, the American Bar Association, and the McLeod County Bar Association.

He was an avid sportsman who enjoyed hunting, fishing, horseback riding, trap and skeet shooting, boating, and water skiing. He loved history, reading and planting trees. He especially enjoyed the time he spent with his wife, children, grandchildren, great grandchildren, and his hunting dogs.

Survivors include his children, Jeanine (David) Allen of Hutchinson, Deborah Keefe and partner, Laura England of Atlanta, Ga., John E. (Marie) Keefe Jr. of Pine City; grandchildren, Jonathan (Amanda Roberts) Boho, Andrew (Hayley) Boho, Angela Allen, John T. (Holly) Keefe, Megan (Matthew) Walsh, Thomas (Brianne) Keefe, Daniel Keefe, and Elizabeth Keefe; great-grandchildren, Alexander, Izabella, Izaac, and Abigail Boho, Jack Walsh and Myrah Keefe; brother, Donald (Mary) Keefe of Golden Valley; sister-in-law, Eleanor Rademacher of Monticello; nieces, nephews, many other relatives and friends.

Preceding him in death were his parents, John M. and Eleanor F. Keefe; and wife, Lillian Mary Keefe.

Arrangements were by the Dobratz-Hantge Chapel in Hutchinson. Online obituaries and guest book are available at www.hantge.com. Click on Obituaries/Guest Book.