GREAT BEND – Larry E. Keenan, 89, of Great Bend, died February 23 at his home. He was preceded in death by his first wife, Ramona Goering Keenan, after 49 years of marriage. He was born November 16, 1929, in Great Bend, the son of Patrick and Mary Hall Keenan. He graduated from Great Bend High School in 1947 and KU in 1954 with a joint undergraduate and law degree.
After graduation, he served for three years in the U.S. Army JAG Corps, earning the rank of Captain. In 1958, he returned home to Great Bend to practice with his older brother Robert at the Keenan Law Firm and continued to practice in his home town for 60 years. In 1960, he was elected Barton County Attorney. Larry was a member of Prince of Peace Parish at St. Patrick Catholic Church and Knights of Columbus Council #862. He was past chairman and member of the Farmers Bank & Trust Board of Directors. He was actively engaged in the oil business and served as the president of Globe Exploration, Inc. He was past president and lifelong member of the KU Law Board of Governors.
Larry loved practicing law and was very devoted to his clients. In 2015, he received the Professionalism Award from the Kansas Bar to recognize his honesty, integrity, and courtesy in the legal profession. In 2016, KU Law School honored him with the Distinguished Alumni Award. In 1999, he and Ramona received the St. Lawrence Award from the St. Lawrence Catholic Campus Center at the University of Kansas, the highest honor given to a layperson.
He was extraordinarily generous, had a heart for the underdog and always believed in second chances. He was an eternal optimist, was fun loving and had an incredible zest for life. In his free time, he loved traveling with friends, hunting waterfowl, collecting wine, telling stories and spending time at “The Shed.”
Larry married Patricia (Hickel) Degner on October 16, 2004.
Survivors include his wife Patty of the home; and five children, Katherine and husband Todd Miller of Wichita, Timothy Keenan and his former wife Alicia, of Great Bend, Matthew and his wife Lori Keenan of Leawood, Marty and his wife Julie Keenan of Wichita and Beth and her husband Tom Hudak of Overland Park, four step children, Chris Degner and his fiancé Janet, Jamey and his wife Jo Degner, Rex and his wife Karla Degner and Denise Shaw, fifteen grandchildren, Annie (Nate) Blake and Luke Miller, Mark, John and Rachel Keenan, Connor, Thomas (Jenny), Robert and Maggie Keenan, Tyler and Jefferson Keenan, Molly, Mary, Jack and Joe Hudak, two great grandchildren, Malachi Madden and Claire Blake, 11 step grandchildren and 2 step great grandchildren.
He is survived by two brothers, Dennis and Terry. In addition to his first wife, he was preceded in death by his parents, his brothers Paul, Russell, Ora, Robert and Pat, and sisters Louise Dale, Sylvia Langer, June Klepper and Gloria Ball.
Visitation will be Friday, March 1, 2019, from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. at Bryant Funeral Home, and 5:00 to 8:00 p.m. at St. Patrick Catholic Church with family visitation from 5:00 to 6:00 p.m., followed by a Knights of Columbus Rosary and Remembrances at 6:00. Funeral Mass will be at 11:00 a.m. Saturday March 2, at St. Patrick Catholic Church, with Father Don Bedore. Interment will follow at Great Bend Cemetery at 3:30 p.m.
Memorials are suggested to Holy Family School Endowment or the KU St. Lawrence Catholic Campus Center, both in care of Bryant Funeral Home, 1425 S. Patton Rd, Great Bend, KS 67530. Condolences may be sent and notice viewed at www.bryantfh.net
Funeral arrangements provided by
Bryant Funeral Home
1425 Patton Road
Great Bend, Kansas 67530
Great Bend (Kan.) Tribune, Feb. 26, 2019