Christine Lynne Keys, 51, of Manchester, CT died peacefully on August 10, 2020, at Hartford Hospital after a courageous battle with cancer. She was born in Somers Point, New Jersey, on March 31, 1969, the daughter of Jacqueline L. Keys and the late Thomas H. Keys. Christine graduated from Yorktown High School, Yorktown Heights, New York, in 1987. In 1991, she obtained her bachelor’s degree in Human Development & Family Relations at the University of Connecticut; and in 2003, her master’s degree in Social Work and Social Service Management at Southern Connecticut State University. Christine was pursuing her PhD at Southern Connecticut State University at the time of her death. Christine’s pride and joy was her son Devin, and she made sure she was able to attend his high school graduation from Manchester High School this past June. Christine dedicated her life to social work. She started her career with the Connecticut Department of Children and Families, where she worked for 16 years. She then joined the Klingberg Family Centers, where she worked for ten years, most recently as the Senior Director of Community Programs. Christine was also the co-founder, along with Jennifer Shimer, of ABOVE the Path, where she worked to enhance the supports for youth and families. Christine was a tireless advocate for youth and teens living in difficult circumstances. Among her peers, she was known as a supportive leader, inspiring trainer, active mentor and caring colleague. She expected excellence because her clients deserved it. Among her friends, she was known as always being open and available – and straight forward and direct! Christine had a special place in her heart for the small African country of Malawi, where she traveled twice to visit her sister-in-law, a fellow community mobilizer and change agent. She and her son Devin most recently visited in April 2019, where she helped Malawian social workers improve and perfect their craft. Along with her mother Jacqueline, Christine leaves her son, Devin Harrigan-Keys, her siblings John C. Keys and his wife Anna Msowoya-Keys, and Deborah A. McBride and her husband Mark McBride; along with many nieces, nephews and cousins.
In lieu of flowers, please make donations to either: Maloto (www.maloto.org) or Klingberg Family Centers (www.klingberg.org).
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