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Richard Frantz KeelSeptember 9, 1927 ~ June 6, 2017 (age 89)
Richard Frantz Keel, 89, passed away on June 6, 2017 due to complications from pneumonia. He was born in Tallmadge to Evelyn and DeWitt Keel on September 9, 1927.
Richard worked full time at Goodyear while a student at East High School. He graduated from the University of Akron and earned a master degree from Kent State. Richard began his teaching experience at Greensburg but spent most of his career as band director at Kenmore High School and then Assistant Principal at Rowell Kent Junior High.
Richard loved to play his trombone. He was chosen to be a charter member of the Akron Symphony Orchestra where he continued to play for 30 years. He played with the Carl Michaels Orchestra for 40 years and was a member of the Akron Brass Quintet. Favorite memories included playing with the Cleveland Orchestra on opening night of Blossom Music Center and being asked to join the Glenn Miller Orchestra on the road after sitting in with them at a local gig. Instead, he followed his passion for church choirs, directing them for 60 years including at Grace Methodist in Akron and Tallmadge United Methodist. Richard was proud to be a published composer of choral works and both groups enjoyed performing his original music. For 10 years, Richard served as President of the Akron Musicians Union. He often played union jobs including many summer concerts in the park.
He was preceded in death by his parents; his brother, Robert; his son, Kevin.
Richard is survived by his beloved wife of 68 years, Betty; son, Brian (Pam) of North Carolina; daughter, Holly (John) Rogers of New York; grandchildren, Kevin, Nathan, Emma, Abby, Lilly Keel, Owen (Daina), Jordan (Devin), Alan (Hana); great grandson, Silas Rogers; sister in law, Betty Lou Keel.
Visitation will be 4:00 until 8:00 p.m. Friday, June 9, 2017 at the Donovan Funeral Home 17 Southwest Ave (on the Historic Tallmadge Circle).
Funeral Service will be at 11:00 a.m. Saturday, June 10, 2017 at the Tallmadge United Methodist Church, 207 N. Munroe Tallmadge with Rev. Scott Low and Rev. Skip Meyers officiating.
Interment will be at Tallmadge Cemetery.
In lieu of flowers, donations can be made in his memory to Tallmadge United Methodist Church 207 N Munroe Tallmadge OH 44278.
Tallmadge United Methodist Church
207 N. Munore Rd., Tallmadge OH 44278