May 06 1935 December 21 2019
Albert Raymond Keeler May 06, 1935 – December 21, 2019 Share this obituary Send Flowers View/Sign Guestbook| Send Sympathy Card| Memorial Donation Albert Raymond Keeler, “Ray,” was born May 6, 1935 to Wilmer and Bertha Keeler. Ray was always proud that he was born at his grandparents,’ John and Lily Bowman, home in Kalispell, Montana. He grew up and went to school in Valier, Montana and graduated from Valier High School in 1955. He joined the Montana Air National Guard in 1954. After a brief courtship he married Bessie Becker at the First Christian Church in Conrad, Montana on Saturday, October 13, 1956. He enlisted in the United States Air Force in 1957 and spent most of his military career as a lineman stationed at Andrews Air Force Base in Washington D.C. After his honorable discharge in 1960 the family of 5 moved back to Montana. Ray worked for three years as a farm hand for Frank Seifert and was an active member of the surrounding Lone Tree Community. He then returned to his military lineman background and went to work for Lewis Construction. He started work for the Montana Power Company in 1967, first in Great Falls where he repaired stoves while taking his journeyman lineman courses. After upgrading to lineman the company moved the family to Melstone where he worked for 17 years. Long working hours and severe weather conditions prompted Ray to apply and was accepted for a position in the meter shop in Butte, Montana in 1986. Ray was fiercely proud of Montana Power, for its company presence and mark it had made in the State of Montana, for the essential service it provided, and for its loyalty to its employees. He spoke highly of his bosses, co-workers, office personal, and sub-contractors he worked with, many of who became life-long friends. After nearly 30 years he retired from Montana Power in 1994. For three years Ray and Bessie traveled in their RV, with a grand trip to the East coast to visit family and old friends they had made during Ray’s service years. They traveled Arizona extensively, finally settling in Yuma in 1999. While in Melstone he was active in the Melstone Volunteer Fire Department. He was most proud of the new fire hall he helped build there. He talked about the many years he played Santa Claus passing out candy from the fire trucks in the surrounding towns. One Christmas he had the fire truck make a special stop with a bag of candy to the home of Casey Miller, an old bachelor in Musselshell who claimed Santa Claus had not come to see him in years. He decided to retire as “Santa Claus” when Sam Twomey (age 4 or 5) informed her mother, Rose, “that guy in the store was not Santa Claus cuz’ Santa Claus was Ray Keeler!” Ray was also a dedicated member of Victory #117 Masonic Lodge in Musselshell. While living in Butte, Ray and Bessie renewed their love of square dancing, which was sparked years before in Lone Tree. They danced and/or Ray called with the Silver Bows and Belles and many other clubs until 2003. With the encouragement of his cousin Edna, Ray took up the artistic talents of his family linage and enjoyed oil painting. After settling in Yuma they joined the Bible Baptist Church. Ray took much pleasure in helping as a handyman at his church and Rancho Bonitos RV Coop Park where they resided. Ray was preceded in death by his parents: brothers, “Ed” and “Butch;” and son, Charles Raymond. He is survived by his wife, Bessie; one brother Alfred (Shirley) of Great Falls; sisters, Mary Ann (Roger) Duberowski of Lake Havasu, AZ, and Roberta Lowry of Salt Lake City, UT.; daughters, Rose (Elmo) Coblentz of Maxville, MT, and Adair (Jay) Rademacher of Musselshell, MT. He is also survived by three grandchildren, Moe Rademacher, Jeannie (Ben) Hager, and Raymond (Liberty) Barrows; and four great-grandchildren, Danica Hager, Lily Barrows, Nathan Hager, and Daniel Barrows; nieces and nephews; and many special Keeler and Bowman cousins. Ray passed away from natural causes at his home on Saturday, December 21, 2019. Services will be held at the Bible Baptist Church, 1780 East 24th Street, Yuma AZ., Saturday, December 28, 2019 at 1 pm. Interment will follow at a later date at the Valier Cemetery. Condolences may be sent to 14555 S. Ave. 4E #107, Yuma AZ 86365. SERVICES Memorial Service Saturday, December 28, 2019 1:00 PM Bible Baptist Church 1780 E. 24th Street Yuma, Arizona 85365 Get Directions on Google Maps Print Obituary
Our most sincere sympathies to the family and friends of Albert Raymond Keeler May 06 1935 December 21 2019.
Death notice for the town of: Yuma, state: Arizona