Richard 'Joe" Keeling
Richard Joseph "Joe" Keeling died April 22, 2019, of complications associated with Parkinson's disease. Born at home, May 27, 1933, in Mason City, Iowa, he was the youngest of five children, a true child of the Depression.
His parents, Beuford and Hildegarde (Steibritz) Keeling; two brothers, Ronald and Rolland; and a sister, Dorothy, preceded him in death. Surviving is a sister, Barbara of Prior Lake, Minn.
After graduating from Mason City High School, he knew he was soon to be drafted, so he enlisted in the Air Force, serving from 1953 to 1957, during the Korean conflict. He was stationed in Korea for 15 months. Taking advantage of the GI Bill, he graduated from Iowa State Teachers College. Later, he received his master's degree from the State College of Iowa. Post-graduate work was done at the University of Iowa and the University of South Dakota.
Joe taught language arts and American history in Iowa Falls and Cedar Falls before moving to Cedar Rapids in 1966. He served as a counselor at Wilson, McKinley and Jefferson until his retirement in 1995. He always had missed the classroom, so in 1997, he began a very rewarding 12-year career as a substitute teacher, primarily at Kennedy High School. Students there knew him as "Joe Sub."
During retirement, Joe and his wife traveled extensively, visiting all 50 states, Germany, France, England, Italy and the Netherlands. He especially enjoyed spending time in cities, New York, Boston, Washington, D.C., San Francisco, San Diego, and his favorite, Chicago and the Cubs. Family vacations were always planned around cities with major league baseball teams. Family was an important part of his life.
He is survived by his wife, Sylvia of Cedar Rapids; daughter, Lizabeth (Michael) of Winterset; and sons, Matthew (Irma) of Lubbock, Texas, and Kevin (Sara) of Scottsdale, Ariz. Providing great pleasure to him were grandchildren, Andrew, Daniel (Shelby), Matthew (Emily), Kirsten, Clay and Kadie. The recent arrivals of three great-grandchildren, Kinsley, Sage and Jameson, were an added bonus.
A family memorial gathering will be planned for a future date. In lieu of flowers, consider a donation to a favorite charity, cause or the Iowa Chapter of the American Parkinson Disease Association.
A special thanks to the entire staff at ManorCare for their professional and compassionate care of Joe.
Online condolences may be left at www.cedarmemorial.com under obituaries.