Richard Kieffer Feeley of Jamaica Plain, known lovingly by his many friends and family as “Rich Nice,” died May 21, 2014, at the age of 34. A proud, lifelong resident of Jamaica Plain, he is survived by his parents, Thomas Kieffer and Patricia Feeley, and brother Luke Kieffer.
Richard attended Boston Public Schools—the Trotter, Timilty and Boston Latin schools—and the Commonwealth School. He graduated cum laude from Harvard College in 2003 with a degree in psychology. He worked at METCO as a tutor and transportation assistant. He was diagnosed with Crohn’s Disease during his freshman year of college and dealt with difficult health issues for the remainder of his life.
Richard took pride in his nickname, “Rich Nice,” and pleasure in sharing his love, humor, support and kindness with everyone in his life. He loved music, quoting long passages from his favorite films, keeping track of the political world, and being with friends and family. He had a deep commitment to social justice, and in his high school years, served on the board of Jamaica Plain’s City Life/Vida Urbana. He embraced the social activism of his family and, in spite of his health problems, found many ways to make a difference in the world, and, in particular, to enrich the lives of his friends and family.
Richard was greatly loved by his coworkers at METCO, especially by the children, who adored “Mr. Feeley,” and enjoyed the love, attention and care he showered on them every day. Richard was truly lucky to have a wonderful mentor and inspiration in Hyacinth McLaren.
Richard has left behind his grandmother, Eileen (Cassidy) Kieffer, and the families of his aunts and uncles: Robert and Karen Kieffer; Donald and Erica Kieffer; Mary Patricia Kieffer and Thomas Ray; Lawrence Kieffer and Pamela Polley; Karen Kieffer, David Kieffer and Denise Thompson Kieffer; and Maureen and Manuel Arruda. Richard was also blessed to grow up living with and being loved by an extended family that included Ivonne and Frank Sepúlveda and their children, María, Paolo and Amalia; and Zilma González Acabá and her children, Taira, Nahir and Diego.