Sean P. McKeough, one of the co-founders of Riot Fest, has sadly passed away age 42. The news was posted to the festival's website:
Last night, Riot Fest lost an irreplaceable part of its closely-knit family. Sean P. McKeough, partner and producer, passed away at the age of 42.
Sean’s partner in Riot Fest, Michael Petryshyn (aka Riot Mike) has issued the following statement.
“Sean was Riot Fest’s pillar of strength. I loved him. I admired him. And to lose him is a lonely and barren feeling. I miss my friend immensely. Without Sean and his belief that a little fest could make a positive impact on people’s lives by doing things differently and left of the dial, Riot Fest would have never become such an intimate family. His Herculean-sized heart and volition made that all possible. Anyone lucky enough to have witnessed his kindness and compassion knows Sean’s muddy work boots will never be filled. It’s impossible… he cared when no one else did. He worked when no one else did. And, he believed in Riot Fest when no one else did.
Our thoughts are with the entire McKeough family and his beloved partner Erin. You were the closest people to him and without your constant love and support for Sean, his unimaginable impact on thousands of lives may have never been realized.
Sean, I will forever be indebted to you. I love you, brother and I’ll make sure that Riot Fest never loses its purpose or vision… the one you saw before any of us.”
Sean also owned Chicago venue Cobra Lounge, and a statement was posted to their Facebook too:
It is with the heaviest of hearts that we are forced to mourn the loss of our champion. It was his vision, drive, ethics and talent that laid the foundation on which an entire culture has grown and developed. That foundation has defined us as individuals in so many ways. We will always be in his debt for creating an environment that allows us to be unapologetically ourselves. His legacy does not end here. He is now legend. We will do our best to carry his torch and push the dream forward. With infinite love and gratitude, we say goodbye to a friend, mentor and brother. May the angels lead him into paradise. R.I.P., Sean Mckeough.
Rest in peace Sean.
Riot Fest Chicago returns in 2017 from September 15-17.