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Ehley, Keith - East Peoria  
Keith Ehley EAST PEORIA - Keith A. Ehley, 73, of East Peoria passed away unexpectedly at 5:56 p.m. Wednesday, May 18, 2016 at his residence. He was born on February 10, 1943, in Milwaukee, WI, the son of Earl and LaVerne Zarling Ehley. He married Rita A Chilausky Solis on August 8, 2008, in East Peoria. Surviving are his wife, Rita of East Peoria; and three sons, Matthew Ehley of North Pekin, IL, Christopher Ehley of Chicago, IL, and Max Ehley of Germantown Hills, IL. Also surviving are one granddaughter, Braylinn; one grandson, Chance Ehley; and one brother, Kent Ehley, and one sister, Sandy Ehley, both of Milwaukee, WI. Also surviving are Rita's children and their families. Keith's career at Caterpillar spanned thirty-seven years. He began his career in Milwaukee and was relocated to G.O. in 1977, working as a Labor Relation's Arbitrator until he retired in 2001. Keith's interests were varied and he brought his intensity and passion to them all. His physical activities included sailing, road cycling and walking. Register's Annual Great Bicycle Ride Across Iowa (RAGBRAI) was one of his favorite events, a 450-plus mile ride, which he was able to complete many times, including once while undergoing dialysis. Keith's favorite pastime was building scale model automobiles. This included haunting model shops and swap meets looking for his "holy grails," doing in-depth research on every detail of the automobile he intended to replicate, and finally, executing the build with exacting precision. It was not uncommon for him to work on a model, set it aside, and return to it years later for completion. Only another modeler could understand his dedication. Other pastimes included reading informational articles, working with computers and trying out new recipes. Keith also had a passion for specific automobiles that one could attest to by seeing his garage. The total tally for cars owned in his lifetime is estimated at nearly forty. His father owned a garage/gas station, thus the interest was forged early in his life. His interest in automobiles included a love of auto racing, especially the Indy 500, where Keith could frequently be found in the stands. Keith faced much adversity during his life, with polio as a child, as well as polycystic kidneys and kidney transplants, which required discipline many could not muster. He never complained and lived a very full life despite these challenges. He played the cards he was dealt very well. Cremation rites have been accorded. A time to celebrate Keith's life will be Sunday, May 29, from noon until 2 p.m. at Mason Funeral Home in Germantown Hills. Memorials in his name may be given to National Kidney Foundation of Illinois, c/o OSF St. Francis Hospital, 530 NE Glen Oak Ave., Peoria, IL 61637; or Central Illinois PKD Chapter PKD Foundation, 8330 Ward Parkway, Suite 510, Kansas City, MO 64114. To share notes of condolences for the family, visit www.masonfuneralhomes.com .
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Published in Peoria Journal Star on May 24, 2016

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Ehley, Keith A. - East Peoria  
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