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Feb. 22, 1942 – June 15, 2022
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Dr. Hugh Jay Kiely entered into rest on June 15, 2022. Hugh was born in Livermore, California, on February 22, 1942. Son of John F. Kiely and Bernice N. Kiely. He grew up on a cattle ranch in the Livermore Valley with his two brothers (John E. Kiely and Dennis F. Kiely) where he developed a passion for working with animals. Hugh went on to attend the School of Veterinary Medicine at UC Davis. During his time there he met the love of his life, Diane Vaniman (Kiely) and the two married in January of 1966.

Shortly after graduating from school, Hugh and Diane moved to Bakersfield where Hugh began practicing as a veterinarian. In 1967, Hugh joined the Air Force and was in the United States Air Force Reserve Veterinary Corps, where he served as a First Lieutenant and was honorably discharged as a Captain. In 1969, Hugh moved to the Oakdale area to continue his practice of veterinary medicine. In the early ‘70s he worked collaboratively with Dr. Jack Alpers to open River Oak Veterinary Hospital in Riverbank where he practiced veterinary medicine until his retirement in 2012, leaving the practice in the care of his much-respected partners, Dr. Mike Hellman and Dr. John Shaner. His years of practicing veterinary medicine afforded him the opportunity to forge life-long friendships with many of his clients and co-workers.

Hugh had a number of passions revolving around the outdoors; chief among them were flying fixed-wing aircraft and hunting in remote locations. He equally enjoyed sharing his experiences with others.

Hugh was known by many, including his family, as a man of great integrity. He had a tremendous work ethic and could be counted on to do what he said he would do. He cared deeply about his family, which was always reflected through his actions. Hugh is survived by his wife Diane, sons Shawn (Brenda), Erin (Cara), and Brandon (Samantha), and his grandchildren Kendall, Emma, Zack, Cole, Lauren and Evan. He is also survived by his two brothers, John E. Kiely and Dennis F. Kiely, and brother-in-law, David Vaniman, and sister-in-law, Brinn Vaniman. The family will have an open house in remembrance of Hugh on a privately announced future date.

The Oakdale (Calif.) Leader

The Riverbank (Calif.) News

June 29, 2022