Father Kehoe Was Always Proud of His Priesthood

A Mass of Christian Burial for Father Charles B. Kehoe, a retired priest of the diocese, was celebrated Aug. 28 at St. Kevin’s Church, Flushing. He died Aug. 24 at L.I. Jewish Medical Center. He was 85.

Father Kehoe

Born in the Bronx, he attended St. Rita’s School there; St. Paul’s Abbey, Newton, N.J.; Fordham University, the Bronx; St. Bernard’s Abbey, Cullman, Ala.; and Pope John XXIII Seminary, Weston, Mass.

Prior to his seminary studies, he served in the U.S. Army and also worked for the Insurance Company of North America.

He was ordained May 26, 1973 by Bishop Francis J. Mugavero at St. James Pro-Cathedral, Downtown Brooklyn.

After studying Spanish at Catholic University in Ponce, P.R., he served as an assistant at St. Francis of Assisi, Astoria, 1974-78; St. Paul the Apostle, Corona, 1978; St. Sebastian’s, Woodside, 1978-79; Our Lady of the Snows, North Floral Park, 1979-91; Ascension, Elmhurst, 1991; and St. Kevin, Flushing, 1991-2003.

He retired in 2003 and took up residence in Cape Coral, Fla. In 2014, he moved into the Bishop Mugavero Residence, Douglaston.

Auxiliary Bishop Raymond Chappetto was the main celebrant of the funeral Mass. Special concelebrants included Msgr. D. Joseph Finnerty, who preached the homily; Msgr. Joseph Mulqueen, and Fathers Ralph E. Barile and Daniel Keohane.

“I have known him for over 15 years now and he was always someone who was good, steady and a faithful priest. He was seen as a wise elder in the community,” said Msgr. Finnerty.

“During difficult times he stood up to the chaos. Before he was ordained, he served in Korea and that showed, as he stood tall in chaos. He was a tested trail guide. He was always seen as a disciple that led his people on the journey of life.

“On one particular time during a crisis in the church on a Holy Thursday Mass he stood up and told the crowd, ‘I am proud to be a priest,’ the crowd gave him a standing ovation. He was the real deal.”

He is survived by five of his 11 siblings. Burial was in St. Raymond’s Cemetery, the Bronx.