Ring of Kerry Irish Dancers

preserving the cultural tradition of Irish ceili and set dancing since 1991

Remembering Ed O'Connor

It is with great sadness that we announce the death of Ed O'Connor, a longtime member of the Ring of Kerry Irish Dancers. He had a way of brightening up the room when he walked in and his absence from  this earth is a great loss. Ed, 81, died peacefully in the company of his family on April 25, 2020 in the midst of the pandemic. A funeral mass and celebration of his life will take place on a future date.

He was born in Washington Heights, NY, raised a family in Emerson, NJ, resided in Derwood, MD, and retired with his wife Joan of 55 years to Pennington, NJ. Ed was a proud graduate of St. Elisabeth School and Cardinal Hays High School. He received his bachelor's degree in Economics from Fordham University and went on to earn an MBA from New York University's Stern School of Business. Ed's career with the Port Authority of NY/NJ aviation division spanned over 35 years. He continued his career at the Federal Aviation Administration in Washington, DC and was a member of the Air Transport Association.

A man of deep faith, Ed attended daily mass, most recently at St. James Church in Pennington. He was a parishioner for over 30 years at the Church of the Assumption in Emerson, where he was active in the Knights of Columbus. An army veteran, Ed continued his service with the American Legion post 269. A keen traveler, Ed and Joan enjoyed trips with his brothers and their wives, passing on his love of travel to his children and grandchildren. He was an avid walker, and known for his daily walks to and from the Emerson train station.

But he did not just walk; he was also a dancer. Many of us remember his talents on the dance floor—at ceilis and performances with the RKIDs. He rarely missed a beat as he jigged and reeled his way around the hall. Ed and Joan attended an endless number of Irish events while living in Derwood and they could be depended on to serve on the set up and/or clean up committees. They participated fully and were huge contributors to the success of the group. We will miss Ed as we already miss Joan.


June 1, 2020