In Memory of



Obituary for Terry O'Keefe

Terrence Paul O’Keefe of Ocoee, Florida passed away peacefully on May 11th , 2024 at 85. Terry was born and raised in Lorain, Ohio, and graduated from St. Mary’s Catholic High School in 1957. After working at Ford Motor Company as an Inspector, Terry retired after 30 years of dedication and hard work.

As a younger guy, Terry was very active in sports and enjoyed playing and coaching baseball and basketball. Because of his love for the game, Terry was also a basketball referee in his spare time.

In 1960, Terry married Mary Stevens (Lorain, Ohio) and they were married for nearly 50 years. When Mary developed Alzheimer's Disease in her late 50’s, Terry took care of her and spent every day devoted to his wife. In 2000, Terry made the difficult decision to move himself and his wife to Florida where Mary would receive wonderful assisted living care for her disease progression. While Mary was in assisted living, Terry visited her multiple times a day until she sadly passed in 2009.

Terry was a true entertainer with high energy and charisma. He had an amazing way of entertaining people with singing, dancing, and joking. Even at the age of 85, Terry would draw crowds with his signature “boogie” moves and you could even find him shooting basketballs with precision. Terry had a true love for life and radiated joy to everyone around him. Terry, also known as Poppy, was the best grandfather in the world and loved to entertain his grandkids. Poppy O’Keefe loved his family dearly and his memory will forever be cherished by his grandchildren.

Terry truly has never met a stranger. No matter who he encountered, Terry always had an amazing way of entertaining a crowd and you could not help but to smile when you were in his presence. No matter where he was or who he was with, Terry would always be telling jokes, singing, and dancing to the beat of his own drum. People of all ages and backgrounds were drawn to him, he could make anyone laugh or get up and dance with him including children, young adults, the elderly, and even his healthcare team. Terry had a God given gift to bring endless joy to everyone around him and lift people’s spirits through laughter.

Terry is survived by his 5 children: Terry (Laura) O’Keefe, Janet O’Keefe, Kim (Kurt) Gilbertson, Mary Kay Kirk, and Tom O’Keefe. Poppy O’Keefe is survived by his 7 grandchildren: Larry Kirk, April Beal, Patrick O’Keefe, Kennedy O’Keefe, Lindsey O’Keefe, Johnny Sousa, and Elizabeth Sousa. He is also survived by his 5 great grandchildren: Tripp Kirk, Helena Kirk, Susie Kirk, Glory Kirk, and Emma Beal.

Terry was preceded in death by his parents Edward David O’Keefe and Mary Catherine Berkenbaugh; 3 brothers Danny O’Keefe, Eddie O’Keefe and Jerry O’Keefe; and 2 sisters Mary Ellen Lindway and Patty Ruehlman. Sadly, Terry is also preceded in death by two of his grandsons. In 1996, Sean O’Keefe, Patrick O’Keefe’s twin, devastatingly was stillborn. In 2021, Terry also unexpectedly lost Jimmy Kirk, his 33-year-old fun-loving grandson whom Terry adored and loved very much!

Terry’s passing is devastating to the family and he will be missed wholeheartedly. His memory, constant laughter, and fun-loving self will be cherished by the family and everyone he has crossed paths with until the end of time. Although the news of his passing is very sad for the family, we are so thankful he is enjoying heaven with Jesus and his family. Terry’s memory will continue to live on through stories, home videos, and many photos that will bring his family tremendous joy during this difficult season of loss.

Terry's arrangements are in the caring guidance of Winter Oak Funeral Home & Cremations in Winter Garden, FL.