VERONA ISLAND – Bruce McKeen, longtime teacher and musician in Bucksport, died unexpectedly early Monday, Dec. 22, 2008. Bruce was born Jan. 5, 1959, in Belfast. Bruce was a talented harmonica player and loved music, especially the blues. Bruce played with many local musicians, but was most proud of his band with his son, Seth McKeen; and the Blues Machine. Bruce was a talented artist as well, specializing in molas, a technique of the Kuna Indians. Bruce loved tennis, having worked as a pro at Country Club of Sarasota in the-mid 1980s, where he became acquainted with many tennis stars of the time, and he taught many tennis players here in Bucksport. Bruce grew up in the Canal Zone of Panama. He shared many stories of wild boar pigs, giant snakes and beautiful beaches. It was one of his favorite places and times in his life. He attended Canal Zone College, Panama, and earned a Bachelor of Science in business from Florida State University. He attended University of Maine – Orono, from which he acquired his teaching certificate. Prior to teaching, Bruce worked for Country Club of Sarasota as tennis pro, and was employed by Sarasota (Fla.) Herald Tribune; Concord Monitor, Concord, N.H.; and Main Street Courant, as a sportswriter. He held his first teaching job Appleton Village School, but he was a dedicated teacher at Miles Lane School, Bucksport, for 16 years. Friends, co-workers, and his students will remember his sense of humor, his enthusiasm for all the world had to offer, and warm weather and vacations in his lounge chair. He is survived by his loving family, wife, Karin; son, Seth; mother, Klara; and brothers, Bryan and Mark. A private ceremony will be held Tuesday, Dec. 30. A memorial service and celebration of Bruce’s life for friends and family will be held in early summer. Donations can be made in lieu of flowers to a scholarship fund for Bruce’s son, Seth, in care of Grace Patterson, P.O. Box 417, Bucksport, ME 04416. Arrangements are under the direction of Mitchell-Tweedie Funeral Home and Cremation Service, 28 Elm St., Bucksport.
Posted Dec. 24, 2008, at 6:32 p.m.