Home>Articles>Statements on the passing of First Lady Deborah B. Kean

Tom and Debby Kean.

Statements on the passing of First Lady Deborah B. Kean

By David Wildstein, April 24 2020 2:50 pm

Senate President Steve Sweeney

“I want to extend my heartfelt condolences to Governor Tom Kean, Senate Republican Leader Tom Kean Jr., my friend and colleague, and to the entire Kean family on the passing of Debby Kean. Debby Kean was a model of quiet dignity as First Lady who was instrumental in the success of former Governor Kean as one of New Jersey’s most popular leaders and admired statesmen. I know that she gained her most cherished satisfaction as a wife, mother and grandmother. Debby Kean enriched the lives of her family, her friends and the people of New Jersey. Her passing is a loss for all of us.”

Assembly Speaker Craig Coughlin

“I want to extend my condolences to the Kean family on the passing of Debby Kean. As a mother, grandmother and one of NJ’s first ladies, she dedicated her life to supporting both her family and this state. My thoughts are with her loved ones during this time.”

Governor Phil Murphy

“As First Lady, Debby Kean did not let the trappings of politics nor the pressure from the media change who she was.  Throughout Governor Kean’s administration – and for all the years, frankly, before and since — she remained a quiet public presence, but was a strong, private presence as a wife, mother and lifelong friend. And even with all being governor entails, she remained focused on ensuring her husband did not forget that while he may have held our state’s highest public office, his greatest responsibility was to his family  and then, in and of itself, was an extraordinary legacy. ”

Republican State Chairman Doug Steinhardt

“On behalf of the New Jersey Republican State Committee, I want to express our condolences to the Kean family. At the NJGOP, we often talk about being motivated to serve by our desire to fight for our families. Debby Kean is survived by a wonderful legacy of public service and dedication to her family. We are eternally thankful for her contributions to New Jersey and she will live on as an inspiration to continue working for our families.”

Former Governor James E. McGreevey

“First Lady Debby Kean was a source of love and support for our 48th Governor. While Governor Kean set a standard of excellence in government, Debbie presided over one of the grand historic families of our state. We mourn her loss with the Governor, Senator Kean,Reed,and Alexandra

U.S. Senator Bob Menendez

“I am very sorry to hear of the passing of former First Lady Deborah Kean.  I know that she shared Governor Kean’s unwavering commitment to our great state and the millions of families who live, work and call it home.  I share my sincere condolences with Governor Kean, State Senator Tom Kean, Jr., Alexandra, Reed, and their families.”

State Senator Gerald Cardinale 

“I am beyond saddened to learn of the passing of Debby Kean. I’ve had the honor of working closely with the Kean family for the past four decades, first with Governor Tom Kean and now with our caucus leader Senator Tom Kean, Jr. During that time, I’ve had the pleasure of meeting Debby many times and watching her efforts to support her beloved family and numerous causes that were close to her heart. She and her family will be in my prayers.”



Spread the news: