Deaths Death Notices
KENNEDY, Robert Thomas
KENNEDY - Robert Thomas Final Approach of JetBlue Legend Bob Kennedy. Buffalo, New York native, Robert Thomas Kennedy, 55, lost his fight with cancer on February 22, 2019. Bob graduated from Cheektowaga Central High School in 1981, earned a BA in Computer Science and Psychology from Canisius College in 1985 and was a member of the DiGamma Society and the Alpha Sigma Nu Honor Society of Jesuit Universities. His technology career began at Bear Sterns, followed by Quick America, Oppenheimer Capital, and Me;tis Technology. Switching to the non-profit world after his mother's death from leukemia, he served at the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society, the National Kidney Foundation, and Girl Scouts of America before opting for the complex world of pilot scheduling, as JetBlue flight crew operations director of the greater NYC area. Bob's additional work and volunteerism included: assisting with accounting for St. Francis Xavier Parish, Brooklyn; Little Learning, an early Childhood Development Program with a focus on literacy, www.littlelearning.com; leader of the Canisius College Alumni Society of Manhattan; volunteering for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society of New York and the Canisius College Admissions, Recruitment & Development programs; parishioner at The Church of St. Paul the Apostle, New York City. Bob was a member of the JetBlue Care Team, which reaches out to those in need within the company and those suffering from all manner of disasters. JetBlue Pilot Neil Kellman said, "I smile when he calls," describing his relationship with favorite Senior Flight Crew Recovery Scheduler Bob Kennedy. A 70+ person flight crew team schedules over 4000 pilots on more than 1000 flights, carrying over 200,000 domestic and international passengers daily. "Bob is a JetBlue legend," said co-worker Susan Kelly, describing the person who brought an exceptionally friendly disposition to the intense environment of airline scheduling. Another co-worker stated, "Bob also made the midnight shift bearable for all of us with his funny personality." Colleagues Elise Haywood and Peter Silva said, "The pilots would do anything for him. His calm, pleasant disposition was a breath of fresh air that simply made everyone love him." A connoisseur of Broadway, his discriminating taste ranged widely with a particular love for musicals. He was especially proud of JetBlue's sponsorship role in bringing the Lin-Manual Miranda production of Hamilton to San Juan, Puerto Rico to raise funds for the victims of Hurricane Maria. He is survived by his partner Fernando Resende; beloved brother Steven F. Kennedy and wife Jean Kennedy, Williamsburg, VA; their children: Megan Barrett, Richmond, VA; Faren and Broc Jones and their children Isabella, Lucas and Madeline, Williamsburg, VA; Emily Kennedy and daughter Elaina, Urbanna, VA; Uncle James J. Cusimano, Esq. and Aunt Martha Cusimano, Poinciana, FL; cousins Joseph J. Cusimano, Emmaus, PA; Dr. Maryann Cusimano Love, Tracey's Landing, MD; Theresa M. Cusimano, JD, Poinciana, FL; and Patricia Cusimano Gomas, Sebastian, FL; cousins David Kisker, Atlanta, GA; Tom Kisker, Rochester, NY; and Ann (Kisker) Durkin, Akron, NY. He was predeceased by his parents Jeanne P. (Cusimano) Kennedy and Thomas L. Kennedy, of Buffalo, NY, and beloved Uncle Rev. Francis J. Cusimano, SJ, New York Jesuit Province and missionary to Lagos, Nigeria. In lieu of flowers, please consider a Memorial donation in Bob's name to Canisius College, Development Office, 2001 Main Street, Building OM211, Buffalo, New York 14208-1517, (716) 883-7000. Online donations: www.canisius.edu AND/OR St. Francis Xavier, 225 6th Avenue, Brooklyn, NY 11215. (718) 638-1880; http://drupal8.stfxbrooklyn.org/admin A Memorial Mass will be held at St. Francis Xavier, 225 6th Avenue, Brooklyn, NY 11215 on Monday, March 4th at 11:00 AM.