Brendan Kennedy, 73, passed away peacefully on Tuesday, August 4, 2020 at his home in Dallas, Texas. He primarily worked in real estate and property management, and for the last ten (10) years for the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) as a Sr. Asset Management Specialist.
Born October 8, 1946 in Teaneck, New Jersey, the son of James Joseph Kennedy, II, Architect, and Elsie Dowd Kennedy, Senate Secretary/homemaker, Brendan was the name chosen by his father, however, a middle name was not bestowed at birth. “Paul” became the middle name conferred at his Confirmation. Both parents and two older brothers, Thomas Patrick Kennedy and James Joseph Kennedy, III, (Suzanne) precede him in death.
Brendan began school at St. Anastasia’s Grammar School, then at age 13 after considering the priesthood, attended the Jr. Carmelite Seminary in Hamilton, Massachusetts. Returning after one year, he then attended and graduated from Bergenfield High School on June 17, 1964. After graduation, the Ronettes were his focus until joining the military.
From his mother’s written account: At the dining room table he said: “Don’t ask me not to go...I’ve made up my mind.” She notes: “It was hard for both of us to let him go. Served not once, but twice. He served well.” On September 13, 1965, early in the U.S. involvement in Vietnam, Brendan enlisted into the United States Army. He performed basics at Fort Campbell, Kentucky, then in Fort Benning, Georgia completed the Airborne Jump School course on 17th February 1966. Brendan would serve two tours in the Republic of Vietnam in the 101st Airborne, aka the “Screaming Eagles” (1966-1967); and in the First Cavalry Airmobile Division, “A” Co. 2/8 aka the “Alpha Raiders” (1967-1968). During his service, his unit participated in Operation Crazy Horse, and several from his unit volunteered to protect the U.S. Embassy in Saigon during the 1968 Tet Offensive. Medals and badges, he earned include the Bronze Star, National Defense Service Medal, Parachutist Badge, Combat Infantryman Badge, Vietnam Service Badge, Air Medal, Army Commendation Medal, and the Good Conduct Medal. In 1984, Brendan, together with other combat veterans from Denver, Colorado, attended the dedication of the Vietnam Wall in Washington, D.C.
Before and after Vietnam, Brendan attended several institutes of higher learning. In 1965, he studied Electrical Engineering and Math at the RCA Institutes, an affiliate of Columbia University in New York City; and in 1976-1977, he attended Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo, CA to pursue studies in Aeronautical Engineering and Math. At the University of Colorado, Denver Center, he studied Real Estate Law; and while he lived in Albuquerque, New Mexico, he attended both the Southwest College for Computer Systems and Programming and The University of New Mexico to study Business Administration. Furthermore in 1975, Brendan earned his private and commercial pilot licenses becoming certified in single engine and instrument airplanes.
Brendan is survived by his wife of 29 years, Dr. Lillian Love Kennedy, daughter, Shannon Courtney Kennedy, 26, son, Gally Brendan Manuel, 40 and granddaughter, Chloe Lenina Manuel, 10. Brendan leaves behind one brother, Joseph Kennedy 64, (Jana), and two sisters, Chris Beshara (Tony) and Joan Hill (Russ), as well as numerous in-laws, nieces, nephews, cousins and friends.
The committal service and burial with military honors are scheduled for Wednesday, August 12, 2020, 2:00 p.m., Dallas-Fort Worth National Cemetery for Veterans, 2000 Mountain Creek Parkway, Dallas, TX 75211 Phone: 214-467-3374. Reception to follow at the Kennedy home, address: 7004 Creek Bend Rd. Dallas, Texas, 4:00 p.m.
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