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Services are Friday for Aline M. Kean

June 4, 2006 — Funeral Services are set for 10 a.m. Friday at the Frederick Evangelical Lutheran Church for Aline Mathilda Kean who died May 25 at the age of 104. A viewing will precede the funeral at the church at 9 a.m.
Kean was born on St. Thomas on Sunday, January 5, 1902. She was the seventh child and third daughter of the eleven children born to Robertina Victoria and Orville Sydney Kean. When she was five years old she and her family moved to what was then considered "the country", a home at 8B Catherineberg where she lived until her death.
As a young girl Kean suffered from poor eyesight, and because eyeglasses were not available on St. Thomas, she spent her youngest years viewing everything around her in a blur. However, her mother was determined to teach her to read early on. While her brothers and sisters played around the house, Kean recalled being at her mother's side learning to read from a book with oversized letters. When Kean got her first pair of glasses she was amazed by the beauty and detail of what she saw. This discovery is what she believed inspired her to become an artist.
Kean was an accomplished painter and particularly enjoyed painting portraits and landscapes. She painted portraits of many family members and friends, beach scenes and sunsets. She was also known for her arts and crafts, crepe paper flowers, dolls made from mango seeds and puppets for marionette shows.
Kean began her career in art education as a student teacher under the direction of Miss Vessup at a school on Vester Gade. In 1921 she became assistant teacher at George Washington School, now the Evelyn Marcelli School. Over the next decade she moved up the ranks to principal teacher, also serving at times as acting principal of the school. In 1931 Kean earned a government scholarship to attend the Hampton Institute in Virginia. After completing a year, Kean transferred to Howard University in Washington, D.C. where she majored in art and minored in education. Upon graduation from Howard, Kean returned to the V.I. where she worked as an art teacher at Charlotte Amalie High School, then located on Commandent Gade. Kean often spoke of the scarcity of art supplies during those years, and how she taught students to recycle materials like egg crates and soda cans to create works of art.
In 1936 Kean was promoted to art supervisor overseeing the art programs at elementary schools throughout the Virgin Islands.
Desiring to further her education, Kean took a leave of absence in 1945 to pursue graduate studies in art at New York University in New York City. She returned to St. Thomas with a master's degree the following year and introduced the concept of correlating art and social students in elementary schools.
In 1966 Kean was named Title One Coordinator, a position that allowed her to help other teachers get teaching degrees at the College of the Virgin Islands.
Kean retired from teaching in the V.I. public school system on June 30, 1971, after fifty years of service. She went on to teach art at the Lutheran School and continued to teach gifted art students at her home well into her 90's.
Throughout her teaching career, Kean was very active in the community and in her church. She was the last surviving charter member of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America Ladies' Aid Society. As a member she designed and made the Pastors' stoles and banners for the church. In addition, she was responsible for decorating all of the Lutheran churches during the different holiday seasons. In 1953 the society established a Carol Sing, visiting the sick and shut-in to sign Christmas carols on the second Sunday in Advent. The Carol Sing always ended at Aline's home where the carolers would celebrate the start of the Christmas season.
Kean was also an active member of the American Red Cross, The Women's League, The Business and Professional Women's Club, the Historic Trust and the Friends of Denmark. In addition, she worked as an arts and crafts consultant for the Girl Scouts.
Kean loved to travel and had traveled to Asia, the Middle East, Europe, the United States and throughout the Caribbean. She owned a large collection of dolls from around the world and an impressive stamp collection.
After traveling the globe, Kean still felt that there was no place in the world more beautiful than her beloved Virgin Islands. She often stood on her porch overlooking Charlotte Amalie amazed by the beauty of the harbor as she watched the passage of the ships, the complex cloud formations against a clear sky, and the vibrant color of the ocean, blue.
Kean is survived by her sister Eliza J. Kean; Sister-in-Law Edith M. Kean; nieces Renee Kean, Doris K. Herman, Luisa E. K. Euwema, Beryl E. Kean, Aline E. K. Bailey; nephews Ernest O. Kean, Jr., Luis E. Kean, Orville E. Kean, Ph. D., Carlito Kean, nieces-in-Law: Juliette C. Kean, Rosemary S. Kean, Josephine R. Kean; nephews-in-law: Henry Herman, Jr., Norman Meier, Paul Bailey; great nieces: Karen Meier Henderson, Catherine E. Kean, M.D., Allegra D. Kean Moorehead, Camille E. Kean, Nathalie Kean, Parmis K. Johnson, Laurel Kean, Jennifer Bailey; great nephews, Jon and Jeffrey Euwema, William O. and John S. Meier, Michael C. Kean, Donald Bailey, Henry Herman III, Edmund, Jose, Jr., and Raymond Kean; special great-great nieces and nephews Gabrielle and Christian Kean, Mya Bailey, Jeremy and Quentin Sprauve;
Godchildren Cyndia McBean Dawson, Sandra Steele Brooks, Seymour Stevens, Ellie Jensen, Amnque Joseph, Amelia Foy, Abigail George, Lawrence Jackson, Eudora White, Otis McFarlane, and others too numerous to mention.
She is also survived by many great nieces-in-law, great nephews-in-law, great great nieces, great great nephews, cousins and other relatives and friends
Pallbearers: Orville E. Kean, Ph.D., George Charles H. Kean Jr. (Carlito)
Michael C. Kean, Adrian Kean, Jon Euwema, Raymond Kean, John Chinnery, Henry O. Millin
Honorary Pallbearers: Ernest O. Kean Jr., Luis Kean, Jeffrey Euwema, Jose Kean, Jr., Valentino Nelson, Lawrence Jackson, John Jowers, Eric Pedersen, Franklin Jarvis, Gregory J. Moorehead, Leslie A. Millin, Sr., Bradford Allan Kilpatrick, Roland Euwema, and John Henderson
Burial will be at Western Cemetery I.

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