Juanita Arene Keller
Juanita Arene Keller, 80, of Kingman went to be with her Lord on Thursday, Feb. 1, 2007, with her family at her bedside. Juanita was born on Aug. 23, 1926, in Lima, Ohio, the fifth child born to Clarence and Joy Stemen Sr. The Stemen family moved to Bisbee in 1939. She met Grover E. Keller when he delivered groceries to her parents' home. They married on Aug. 29, 1942, and spent 63 years together.
During World War II, Juanita served as a civilian worker at the U.S. Army Fort Huachuca Base, Ariz., and was thrilled to become a 'Rosie Riveter.' She and Grover began raising a family when WW II ended.
They moved to Kingman in 1952. She became an assistant cook at Mohave General Hospital in the mid 1960s (now, Kingman Regional Medical Center) and retired in the late '70s. She and Grover owned/operated JP Greenware and Ceramics in downtown Kingman for many years.
She enjoyed helping to educate her children and grandchildren by preparing ceramics, cutting things out, and anything else to benefit the local school children.
She made Arizona and Kingman history as Arizona's first certified female archery instructor; Arizona's first caucasian family adopting Native American children; Kingman's first female Cub Scout pack leader; and first coronary bypass patient to Webcast a live open-heart surgery to raise heart disease awareness. The May 9, 2001, life-extending surgery was performed by Dr. Dietrich, founder of the Arizona Heart Institute, and benefited the American Heart Association/Giving Hearts Foundation (www.givinghearts.net).
In 1952, Juanita joined the First Southern Baptist Church in Kingman. She helped Grover in his service as a deacon until his death in 2005. Much of their service was performed in obscurity with their children alongside. She stressed the importance of committed service to the Lord through the church and its members and she expected future generations to be taught the same.
Juanita was a loving and giving daughter, sister, cousin, wife, "Mama", aunt, ("Fish") grandma, ("Wow") great-grandma and friend.
Juanita was preceded in death by her husband, Grover; her parents, Clarence/Joy Stemen Sr.; her parents-in-law, Clinton/Claudia Keller; her siblings, Joy Stemen, "Willie" Stemen, Fay Griffin, Marie Lundy, Jack Stemen and two babies of her own.
She is survived by her children who live in the Kingman area: Sharon (Lee) Haywood, Zelda (Richard) Wright, Don (Debbie) Keller, Clint (Loni) Keller, Danielle Keller and Lana (Steve) Keller-Robinett.
She is also survived by 13 grandchildren: Ken (Anne) Haywood, Jon Haywood, "Bear" (Huyen Tran) Haywood, Shelley (Eric) Oestmann, Debbie Wright, Suzann (Alex) Keller-Duval, Jennifer (Hans) Christensen, Mik (Brystal) Keller, Ted Peters, Dana Keller, Kyle Keller, Amber Robinett and Sherry Robinett; and 15 great-grandchildren.
A memorial service to celebrate her life is scheduled for 2 p.m. on Sunday, Feb. 11, at the First Southern Baptist Church, 3120 Hualapai Mountain Road.
In lieu of flowers, please make donations payable to the Building Fund, First Southern Baptist Church.
Katherine Luella Warwick was born Aug. 10, 1914, in Lima, Ohio, to Alfred Tobias and Ethel Gardner Warwick. She grew up in Sandusky, Ohio, before moving to Toledo where she graduated from Libbey High School. She married Harold Goudy, a printer with the Toledo Times, in January 1932, and raised two children, Eugene Warwick and Dennis Lee Goudy.
Kay was a prolific writer of short stories, most of which were published. She loved books and worked in libraries for most of her life - in Corpus Christi and Robstown, Texas, as well as Toledo. She retired in 1982 and settled in Kingman.
Kay died Nov. 14, 2006, and is survived by her sons, Gene and Dennis, as well as grandchildren and great-grandchildren.