Pvt. Keith Williams Keith Michael Williams was born in Visalia, CA December 18, 1994 to Frankie Williams and Debbie Tuttle. Keith was the youngest of three and was fondly known as "Keefers" or "The Boy". Keith attended Crestwood Elementary, Royal Oaks and Linwood Elementary, La Joya Middle school and graduated from El Diamante High School in 2013. Keith participated in Football, Drum Line, El Diamante Link Crew, and was part of the Homecoming Court 2013. Keith was a SCICON camp counselor and was an ASA softball umpire. Keith enjoyed dove hunting, attending pow-wows, and any activity that put him in motion - long boarding, snowboarding, skiing, and surfing. Keith loved listening to music and hanging out with his best friend Martin Sustaita. Keith upheld a long time tradition of his family to join the US Army infantry after high school. He graduated from Fort Benning, GA on August 18, 2013. He was stationed in Fort Carson, CO in December 2013 and deployed to Operation Enduring Freedom Afghanistan in March 2014. Keith sustained a head injury when an IED struck his vehicle and he was airlifted to the Kandahar hospital where he died. Staff Sgt. Benjamin Prange (Nebraska) was also killed and three other soldiers survived the explosion. He is survived by his Step-father Mike Tuttle and step-mother Tara Williams, sisters Samantha Williams, Chelsea Sestini, step-sisters Alice Shabazian, Maggie Boles, and Step-brothers Nick Boles and Christopher Tuttle, his brother in-law Shaun Sestini and nieces and nephews Reagan, Trent and Greyson Sestini and Kenna Williams, Grandmother Jean Painter (Australia) and multiple aunts, uncles and cousins in Porterville, Australia and New Zealand. He is preceded in death by his Grandparents Harry and Edna Williams (Porterville), Robert Painter (Australia), and his Auntie Pamela Williams (Porterville) and Marie Painter (New Zealand). In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Keith M Williams Memorial Scholarship at Educational Employees Credit Union, P.O. Box 5242, Fresno, CA 93755-5242) or the Wounded Warrior Project. Visitation will begin at 4 PM till 8 PM on Friday, August 8, 2014 at Salser and Dillard Funeral Chapel. A funeral service will be held at 10 AM on Saturday, August 9, 2014 at First Assembly of God Church, 3737 S. Akers, Visalia, followed by Military Honors and American Indian Service at El Diamante High School, 5100 W. Whitendale Ave., Visalia. A memorial tribute may be offered by logging onto www. salseranddillard.com
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Published by Visalia Times-Delta and Tulare Adv-Register on Aug. 6, 2014.