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Harry N. Keairns

Harry N. Keairns

Des Moines - Harry Nelson Keairns, age 74, of Des Moines (formerly of Sioux City), died peacefully at Kavanagh House on Thursday, December 19, 2019. He lived graciously and courageously until the very end. He was born in Sioux City, Iowa. The seventh child of fifteen for Kenneth Pearl and Nellie Mae (Watterson) Keairns. He graduated from Riverside High School in 1963, and served in the United States Army (Special Forces Green Beret) from August 1963 to August 1966. He received numerous medals and commendations for his combat experience in Vietnam. In January 1966, he was married to his high school sweetheart Ruth (Smith) Keairns. They have three children. Harry loved being a father and spending time with his family. In 1985, Harry founded Computer Support of Sioux City with his partners which created a lovely place for he, his wife, kids and many of his siblings to spend some of their working careers. In 1991 Computer Support was recognized as an Inc. 500 fastest growing company in America. Harry served on the Sioux City Council from 1992 thru 1995, a very productive period of accomplishment for Sioux City, including a new City Hall based on Harry's design, a minor league baseball stadium and recreation trails.

The family moved to Des Moines in 2003 and he continued to work in the computer industry as a systems analyst until retirement. Harry leaves behind his beloved wife Ruth; his son Brian (Linda) Keairns and two daughters Brenda (Steve) Caruso and Jane Keairns all of Des Moines. He also leaves his best friends and brothers; Neal (Jeanette), Robert (Donna), William (Lori), Ken (Nancy), Jim (Kathy), Steven (Lorraine Johnnie), Scott (Krista) and four sisters; Diana Butler, Kenna Mae Owens, Dorothy Dill, Sue (Terry) Hubert. Harry also leaves a sister-in-law; Marilyn Keairns and two brothers-in-law; Richard Currie Smith (Margaret Stedman-Smith) and Sean Smith (ex-wife Mary Cosgrove). He was a beloved uncle to numerous nieces and nephews. Harry was a cherished Bompa (grandpa) to six precious young people Emma Jane (Caruso) and Andy McLeavy, Richie Caruso, Audrey Keairns, Lillian Keairns and Hayleigh Fecho.

He was predeceased by his parents and parents-in-law; Richard and Vera (Currie) Smith, his older brother Donnie and two sisters; Barbara (Keairns) Smith, Carol Ann (Keairns) Lane and five brothers-in-law, Jack Smith, Wayne Owens, William (Bill) Butler, Jim Lane and Roy Dill.

Harry (Bean) was known for his unconditional love of his family, his strength, tenacity and quick wit.

Harry's life will be celebrated with a visitation from 2 to 5 p.m. on Sunday, December 22nd at Iles Dunn's Chapel. A memorial service will be held at 10 a.m. Monday, December 23rd at Plymouth United Church of Christ at 42nd and Ingersoll. The burial will follow at Iowa Veteran's Cemetery in Van Meter.

Funeral arrangements are under the direction of the Iles Funeral Home in Des Moines. Online condolences may be left at www.Ilescares.com. Memorials may be directed to the Sioux City Railroad Museum or to the Animal Rescue League of Iowa in honor of his grand-dog, Murphy.
Published in Des Moines Register from Dec. 20 to Dec. 22, 2019
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