Lighthouse 02

James Joseph Kealy

November 4, 1935 ~ March 19, 2020 (age 84)


James Joseph Kealy born in Arklow, County Wicklow Ireland, whose home was in Albuquerque, New Mexico, United States of America, left the earth for a better place the evening of 19th March, 2020 surrounded by loved ones at home. He will be missed immeasurably. Words could not explain how much so. He was an impressive gentleman who loved his family unconditionally, and he too will be loved forever more. 


Born to William Kealy and Kathleen Kealy 4th November 1935. Jim began working at an early age. He spent his childhood in the woods chopping trees. He would practice who could yell timber the furthest amongst his brothers. He also worked at a China making factory with his father as a “mortar runner” packing the machinery with clay.


Jim went to sea at thirteen years of age, and continued for nearly 30 years. He started as a deck boy, and finished as a first officer. He became the best rigger in Ireland. Jim was in charge of large crews that would sometimes include two of his brothers. “Lifting 400 tons was as easy as lifting a ton” Jim would say. Jim was proud to have never had an accident in the danger of this sort of work.


Jim would try career opportunities to stay close to home. He went to Arklow technology school to pursue engineering. He trained to be an accountant and was authorized to notarize documents.


He was a miner at Avoca near Arklow. He told his father that he could not trade the sea to carry a picket shovel in the mines. Although though he made more money in the mines than at sea; he “sloughed off back to sea.”


Jim saw most of the ports in every continent. He was in Japan for a while for the navy merchant marines, as well as an oil rigger in Liverpool and Canada.


He served on (among others):

The Irish Elm
The Irish pine (relieving his brother)
The Irish Heather
The Irish Rose
The Irish Star
The Irish Hawthorne (tanker)
The Irish Fern
The Fullani
The Waipawa
The Orient City
The Dominion Monarch
The Timaru Star

Jim was to sail the seas, and as hard as he tried to get away from it; he always went back to sea.

Exodus 19:19 - The Lord shall fight for you, and ye shall have your peace.


Jim is survived by his heart/wife Sherry Hynes, son, Shane Kealy. Daughter Erin Wands, husband/best friend, David Wands, grandchildren Amos Wands and Adeline Wands. Son Paul Kealy (passed) grandchild Ciara Marie Doyle, Son, Tony Kealy, wife Rachel Kealy, grandchildren David Kealy and Becky Kealy. Daughter Karen Kealy, grandchildren Calum Kealy Devereux, Amy Kealy Devereux, Natasha Kealy and Shauna Kealy Devereux. Brother Sean Kealy (passed) wife Mairead Kealy, their children David, Brian, Alan and Maureen.  Sister Eileen O'Brien, husband Frank O' Brien (passed), their children Declan, Stephen and Hazel . Sister Mary Walker, husband Jack Walker (passed), their children Joe, Kay, William, John (passed), Austin, Gavin, Sharon, Elaine and Caroline (passed). Brother Billy Kealy, wife Dor Kealy, their children Brenda, Clodagh and Bill . Brother, Ned Kealy, wife Anna Kealy , their children Leanne, Rowena and Colm. Sister Margaret Coburn, husband Michael Coburn, their children Michelle and Stephanie. Sister Betty O' Neill, husband Dan O' Neill (passed), their children John, Daniel, Lisa and Alison (passed). Sister Kathleen Lawler, husband William Lawler (passed), their children Shane, Brian and Darren. 

 Hamlet, Act-1, Scene-III, 78–82.    
This above all: to thine own self be true,
And it must follow, as the night the day,
Thou canst not then be false to any man.


A memorial service and burial for Jim will be held at a later date followed by a gathering at the home of David and Erin Wands.


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