Robert A. Keller
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1947 ~ 2013
Our precious son, Bobby, was welcomed into the open arms of his Savior on March 20, 2013. He mercifully passed away peacefully after several years with COPD. For the past eight years he lived at home with his mother, Ruth Fuller and stepfather, Lee Fuller. As long as Bobby's health permitted, he lived in his own apartment in our home and treasured his independence and privacy. As he became more ill, his oft repeated statement was "when I get well" I can go back to my own home. Then he would reminisce about things he wanted to do again "when he got well." Bobby had a very special personal relationship with Jesus and talked with Him like they were old friends. He was a Member of the S.E. Christian Church and for several years he helped in the children's Sunday School class. He would tell us about the lesson he learned and would always remind us to be sure our names were written in the Book of Life.
Bobby was born in Missoula, Montana 7-28-1947. He lived in Montana and Washington until he moved to Utah in 1983. Through a family friend he was employed with Marriott Corp. and worked for them for 18 years in several contracted cafeterias. He worked at UDOT, American Express, AT&T and Varion and made many friends during these years. Very often when Bobby was on a trip with the family we'd hear, "Hi, Bobby!" He would explain that was a good friend of his and you could tell these people were very fond of Bobby.
Bobby owned his own condo, as did his sister, Verdella, who lived directly across the street from him. These two were very close and went on trips together, went dancing, to the circus, the ice capades, movies, the theatre, concerts and a special time was when they sang together in a Christmas church choir. The four of us went together to many of these events. We all loved our "Friday night out" dinners with our special neighbors. Both Bobby and Verdella had cats who became part of our family. We took memorable trips together and holidays became special when Bobby would be Santa. Bobby was introduced to hunting, fishing and golf by his dad and mom. We three fished nearly every lake, river or creek in Montana and had many late night fish fries after working all day and fishing all evening. Ruth's family had lake homes and a ranch and we spent many vacations together with the family. Golf became a favorite pastime. Bobby played and competed in golf with the Special Olympics as well as swimming, track and gymnastics and won many first place medals. He was a natural!
With Bobby's brother, Jim and half-brother, Jerry, the three boys shared several adventures in Washington. They often laughed about the rainy pancakes they had on a rainy camping trip on Bainbridge Island. One summer Bobby spent three weeks with Jim in Oregon. They stayed in a home on the Pacific Ocean beach. They had delicious food in delightful eating spots, then visited with Jerry and his family at the end of that holiday. Their last hurrah was a trip to Hawaii for the three boys. It would take Bob several days before he would be happy to be home again.
Jim had a major influence on Bob's music appreciation. Bobby, his mom and dad spent every Saturday morning for years at the library picking out music he would play all during the week. Bobby also learned to play the drums and he would accompany Jim on the piano. Verdella, mom and dad took Bobby to his drum lessons and recitals. Indelible memories.
Bobby's survivors are his mother and stepfather, Ruth and Lee Fuller; brother, James Keller and wife, Linda; half-brother Jerry Keller and wife, Ruth, their sons Julian, Cameron and Adrian; and many aunts, uncles and cousins. Deceased were his sister, Verdella Keller; father Andy Keller; his special Grandma Nelson; and uncle's David and James Nelson.
Our special heartfelt thanks go to Hine' Akauola and Lei Fotu, whose loving and devoted attention to Bobby the past two years was greatly appreciated.
A memorial service will be held at the S.E. Christian Church, 1881 Vine Street, Salt Lake City, on April 6, 2013 at 2:00 p.m. In lieu of flowers, please make contributions to the Humane Society of Utah, 4242 South 300 West, Murray, Utah 84107.
Published in Salt Lake Tribune on Mar. 31, 2013