Dennis James Keating, age 60, of Candlewood Drive, went to his eternal rest on Tuesday, September 15, 2020, after spending 78 days in a hospital ICU valiantly fighting the Covid-19 virus. He was born in San Diego, California January 21, 1960, the son of Judith Jahoda and Robert Joseph Keating. He graduated from Stephens County High School in Toccoa, Georgia June 1979.
Upon graduation, he enlisted in the US Navy. He served for 20 years as a Seabee equipment operator. After graduating boot camp in San Diego he then was stationed in Brunswick, Maine. He was then stationed in Gulfport MS, Puerto Rico, Adak AK, Sigonella Italy, Guantanamo Bay Cuba, Millington TN, Newport RI, ending his service in Pensacola FL. He was honorably discharged on November 30, 1999, with the rank of Petty Officer First Class.
While stationed in Brunswick Dennis met and married his wife, Evelyn Caron, on December 12, 1981. They had two sons: Andrew Joseph and Adam James. He was a very devoted and loving father, coaching his sons’ football, baseball, and soccer teams, and spending time outdoors and camping with his boys and their Boy Scout troops. One Scout highlight for him was a week-long camping trip in the Appalachian Mountains with Andrew and Adam. Dennis and Adam had a passion for dirt-biking, spending many weekends on dirt tracks. Last year, Brantley, Adam’s son accompanied them for the first time.
Mr. Keating enjoyed traveling with his wife. Grand Cayman, Victoria Canada, and Bruges Belgium were some of his favorite destinations. He and his family enjoyed several Disney cruises. He was a self-taught, accomplished wood-worker and car enthusiast. He and Adam had just started working on restoring a 1968 Pontiac GTO. Dennis had a competitive streak that really showed up whenever the family played Parcheesi.
Mr. Keating is predeceased by his parents. Surviving are his wife Evelyn of Navarre, son Andrew of Washington, son Adam and wife Shelby of Virginia, two grandsons Brantley James and Clayton Michael, his brother Robert Blackwell and wife Donna of California, sister Tammy Jahoda of Nebraska, and niece Ashley Blackwell of California, and Lorraine Caron sister-in-law of Maine.
This big, burly man with a heart of gold and a welcoming smile will be terribly missed by family and friends. Visitation for Mr. Keating will be Monday, September 21st, 10 – 11 am at Saint Sylvester Catholic Church, 6464 Gulf Breeze Parkway in Gulf Breeze, followed by Mass at 11. A reception will be held in the church hall immediately after Mass.
Memorial donations may be made on Dennis’ behalf to the Pensacola Humane Society, 5 N Q Street, Pensacola, FL 32505.
Condolences may be offered at www.roselawn-fh.com.