Kilian (Kevin) Joseph Sullivan


Kilian (Kevin) Joseph Sullivan of Washington DC passed away on February 9, 2014. He was born October 2, 1955 to Mary Virginia (Schleuter) Sullivan and Michael Paul Sullivan in North Platte, NE. He attended McDaid Elementary and graduated from North Platte High School in 1974. He entered Conception Seminary College in Conception, MO and graduated in May, 1978 with a B.A. degree in music. He attended St. Thomas Seminary in Denver, CO for 1 year before entering the novitiate of Conception Abbey in 1979 and professed vows in 1980 taking the name of Brother Kilian. He attended St. Meinrad Seminary, St Meinrad, IN, graduating in 1989 with a Masters in Divinity degree and was ordained in May 1989.

Kilian then studied at Catholic University in Washington DC and received another degree in liturgical studies and music and returned to Conception Abbey where he taught music in the seminary and was very involved with the students and student liturgy. He later left Conception, returning to Washington DC where he was involved in directing musical liturgy and was a choir member of the Basilica of the Immaculate Conception. He was privileged to travel to Rome with the choir and performed solo for Pope John Paul II. At the time of his death he was involved with music ministry and employed by the Dept. of Commerce, Division of Public Affairs in Washington DC.

He is survived by eight siblings and their families, sisters, Elizabeth (DeWayne) Lancaster of Cody, NE, Julia (Mike) Merrill of West Haven, UT, and Angela (Steve) Harwick of Hastings, NE; brothers, Patrick (Cornelia) of Omaha, Philip (Debbie) of Suffolk, VA, Thomas (Kathy), and twin brother, Kelly all of North Platte, and John (Lisa) of Grand Junction, CO and all their children and grandchildren.

Kilian was preceded in death by his parents.

A memorial will be established and online condolences may be shared at

Christian Wake Services will be 7:00 p.m. Wednesday, February 26, 2014 at Adams & Swanson Funeral Home. Mass of Christian Burial will be 11:00 p.m. Thursday, February 27, 2014 at St. Patrick’s Catholic Church with the Reverend Richard Piontkowski as celebrant. Inurnment will follow at North Platte Cemetery. Those wishing to sign the register book may do so from 9:00 a.m. until 9:00 p.m. Wednesday, February 26, 2014 at Adams & Swanson Funeral Home.

  • Big Jim

    He taught me how to control my breath during an oral performance. I’ll always be grateful for this.

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  • Beatriz Grey

    He had that rarest of gifts: the ability to find the beauty and pleasure in not only music but in his passions, indulging in them quietly over decades. During his life, he touched many and many touched him. He was not a rich man. He was certainly a proud man. He was not an elite man. But he seemed so to many. He was not especially attractive or overly cerebral. But he had a snippy quality about him easily seen as for refinement, good breeding and intellectual prowess. So I suppose, what I’m really trying to say is that he found some success in life simply because he was overestimated by so many time and time again. This flare for being misunderstood was both comical and inspiring. He threw all of himself into his art and flaming passions, even to his detriment. The French have a term, “le petit mort.” It is ironic that in his passionate pursuit of this so-called “little death,” that his own habits should finally lead him to such a jaw-dropping demise. There’s no getting around it: He was a driven man driven to embrace men of equal passion for beauty and pleasure. And he felt no shame in living that fully. So through our tears of grief, let us endeavor to never forget the tragic and courageous hilarity of that aspect of his life. It ensued us each time he graced us with his eccentricities. Surely the Seraphim themselves are laughing themselves to tears at this very moment. RIP old friend.

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  • Stevie D’G

    Kevin was a great guy. I first met him when he came to tune my organ. I later discovered he could make a good casserole and had a gentle touch when it came to the needy. Everything he did was tops! He could inspire you with lessons on liturgy or just break out a bottle of wine and give you a relaxing evening. And he smelled good, I mean really good, no matter what he’d been doing. Few of us can say that. Not only was he happy about life, but he was extremely happy. His voice was seductive, like warm butter, and worked every time. That’s all I want to say really, I just want to be up front about all my great memories of him. I loved him more than any other man. So now, I cry for him. I laugh for him. I’m sad for him. I’m happy for him.

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