Valley Center (Formerly of Hillsboro) – Jean Elizabeth Keller, 87, passed away October 14, 2019 at Towanda, Kansas. She was born November 28, 1931 in Wichita to Charles and Belva (Mercer) Moore. She married Robert Roy Keller September 3, 1950 in Wichita. Survivors include: husband, Roy Keller of Valley Center; son, Robert (Bob) Keller Jr. and wife Tracy of Topeka; daughters, Janice Claassen of Towanda, Beverly Anne (Stephen) Rue of Valley Center; sister, Beverly (Gene) Burrell of Peck, KS; 29 grandchildren and 26 great-grandchildren. Predeceased include: son-in-law, Randy Claassen in 2019; granddaughter, Brenda Keller. Celebration of Life Service 10:00 a.m. Saturday, October 19, 2019 at North West Free Methodist Church 3224 North Tyler Road, Wichita, KS 67205. Interment will follow at Towanda Cemetery in Towanda. Family will receive friends from 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. Friday at the Church in Wichita. Memorials to North West Free Methodist Church Children’s Ministry in care of Jost Funeral Home P.O. Box 266 Hillsboro, KS 67063. Online condolences at www.jostfuneralhome.com
Life Sketch Taken from the Funeral Bulletin
Jean Elizabeth Moore Keller was born November 28, 1931, at home, in Wichita, Kansas.
To Charles Everett and Belva Ellen (Mercer) Moore. Seven years later she was blessed to become a big sister to Beverly Ellen Moore. Growing up Jean had many years of perfect Sunday School Attendance. As a young person at an outdoor Stuart Hamblin concert she dedicated her life to serving her Savior Jesus, and promised to go where He called. She graduated from North High School and attended Wichita Business School. Then worked for
Kroger Grocery Store office as a Comptometer operator several years.
Jean met the love of her life, Robert Roy Keller and after a short courtship they married on September 3, 1950. Nine months into their marriage Roy was drafted into the Army. They celebrated their 1st anniversary in Columbia, South Carolina. Roy was in Korea, and Jean was back home with her family for their 2nd anniversary. In January of 1953 they were happily reunited.
The Lord blessed them with three children. Robert Roy Jr., Janice Gail, and Beverly Anne. Jean’s Mother passed away when Robert was 6 weeks old, and her Father passed away a year later. Jean accepted the responsibility of loving and caring for her teen-age sister Beverly.
Life was moving along smoothly, when Roy accepted God’s call into the ministry. Little did Jean realize that her promise in her teen-age years to God would be fulfilled in this way. After four years of preparation, along with pastoring part-time at the Kingman Free Methodist Church, their home was sold and full time ministry in the Free Methodist church began. First the Minneapolis Free Methodist Church, 6 years, then Crestway F.M. Church, in Wichita, 16 years,and finally in Topeka, 7 years. Jean worked diligently beside Roy at each church. Falling in love with all the people, and serving every way she could. Each move was so hard on her. Then she would fall in love with the next group of people! She especially loved entertaining…monthly birthday parties, Christmas Open House, Mini Ladies Retreats to name a few. Her children remember her hosting missionaries, and many revival speakers also. Many homeless people who had no food were fed hot meals by Jean along with blankets and other needs. She enjoyed working in Women’s Ministries, and served as Vice President in the Kansas Conference. But her greatest love was for children and youth in C.Y.C., Christian Youth Crusaders. The church’s children’s program. She also directed many Christmas Programs and other special programs in the church. One of Roy’s favorite sayings about her was “She was the BEST preachers wife!”
While at Crestway, Robert married, Janice was a senior, and Beverly was in 7th grade. Jean decided to go back to work. Taking a position with USD 259 working at Southeast High School, for 11 years. She became Enrollment Clerk, responsible for approximately 1500 class schedules etc. She was presented the Good Apple Award for her diligent work. Jean also was involved with BSF (Bible Study Fellowship). Her name was passed to ladies in Topeka and she helped start a BSF there and worked as Treasurer for 3 years.
Her family meant the world to her. She was the happiest when they would visit. She loved baking cookies and pies for get togethers. Christmas was always so special. Every room was lovingly decorated. She made a Christmas stocking for each member in the family, as they were born, adopted, or married into it. Atticus Robert is number 60 for immediate family, plus 3 for others, 63 total. A cozy quilt was made for each grandchild, and great grandchild when they turned 2, or were adopted into the family, until she was not able to continue due to a bad shoulder. Jean made beautiful checker-board Baby Dedication cakes, and adorable lamb cakes as each baby turned 1, even up to Jonas, her grandson who just turned 1 this past summer. She also baked sourdough starter bread for over 45 years, made from her mother-in-laws starter, now more than 200 years old. Sharing many loaves! Some even mailed! Several have taken over the bread making in hope to keep the starter alive.
Jean is preceded in death by her Parents, Grandparents, many Aunts, Uncles, Cousins, and friends. Her hardest loss was October, 19, 1991, her precious red haired Granddaughter Brenda Michelle Keller, taken from this life way to early, whom she forever loved. She also lost a son-in-law, Randy, just 8 months ago. She leaves behind her husband of 69 years. Her children, Robert, Janice, and Beverly. Children-in-love Tracy, (Randy), and Stephen. 17 grandchildren, 12 grand children-in-love and 25 great grandchildren. Each one held a very special place in her heart and life. Her biggest desire and hope was for them to walk hand in hand with Jesus and one day meet her in heaven. Many, many, prayers and tears have been given on their behalf. She was a diligent prayer warrior.
Jean went home to Jesus, her precious Lord and Savior, surrounded by her daughters, husband,and some granddaughters. Many grandchildren, great grandchildren, sister, nieces, nephews, and many other family and friends had traveled far to say goodbye. She will be remembered and missed by so many.
“May we be an unbroken family around His throne.” Emmett Keller, father-in-law