The Daily Me


GREENVILLE - Richard L. "Duke" McKeil died on September 16 following a long illness. He was born December 3, 1931 in Greenville, but was a resident of Rockwood. He attended schools in Rockwood and Greenville, class of 1950. He held bachelor's and master's degrees in business and economics from the University of Maine. Duke retired from the University of Southern Maine with the rank of Professor Emeritus of Business, Economics, and Management after 30 years of teaching. While there he administered a grant from the Maine Real Estate Commission which led to the establishment at USM of the Center for Real Estate Education. He was the Public member of the Maine Real Estate Commission for seven years. Duke served on the Gorham Planning Board for 5 years and the Gorham Town Council for two terms. He taught at Matanawcook Academy in Lincoln prior to his university affiliation.

He was associated with The Mount Kineo Resort on Moosehead Lake while in college and later in management as vice-president of the corporation. In that role he was appointed by Governor Curtis to the Mark Maine Committee, a committee associated with economic development in the 1960's.

In retirement Duke was the executive director of the Moosehead Marine Museum and later president of the non-profit corporation. At the same time he was active in raising the funds needed for the restoration of the former steamship KATAHDIN and for building a new museum at the site. He was a member of the Campaign Finance Committee for the C.A. Dean Memorial Hospital; The Natural Resources Education Center; the Piscataquis Committee of the Maine Community Foundation; the Moosehead Historical Society and the Maine Association of Archives and Museums. McKeil was the founding president of the Grapevine Scholarship Fund in 1967.

Although Duke had been all over the world, he was always happiest on Moosehead Lake. His favorite activities were sailing, skiing, snowmobiling and leading camping trips with family and friends as Honorary Mayor of Duck Cove. Duke was a gourmet cook who enjoyed entertaining and never missed an afternoon at the Stress Free Moose where he had many friends. He also enjoyed raft-ups with other members of the Moosehead Lake Yacht Club and was a past Commodore.

Duke is survived by his loving wife of 49 years Susan (Chase) McKeil of Greenville; two daughters, Elizabeth Cannell (partner of Kevin Cannell) of Highlands Ranch, Colorado and Kelly McKeil (partner of Ken Topel) of Windham, Maine; a son Richard McKeil (partner of Kelley Watson) of Greenville; six grandchildren: Ashley Williams, Max Bangs, Kylie Bangs, Brendan Hoban, Keegan Cannell and Owen Cannell; 4 great grandchildren: Ethan, Cassidy, Joel and Meadow; several nieces and nephews, especially Dan Martin of Surprise, AZ and his wife Susan. He is also survived by his lifelong friend of over 70 years, Louis O. Hilton.

A celebration of life will be held at the Union Evangelical Church in Greenville on Tuesday, September 20 at 2pm. Visiting hours will be 6-8 PM Monday evening at the church. Arrangements are by Crosby & Neal, Greenville.

In lieu of flowers, please contribute to the Moosehead Marine Museum or to the Grapevine Scholarship Fund, c/o Charles Carter, Greenville, ME 04441. Those who wish may leave written condolences at

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