PORT ARTHUR —
Reo Joseph Keller, Sr. of Port Arthur, Texas died peacefully Wednesday, October 31, 2012 at home surrounded by his family. A native of Marksville, Louisiana, he was a resident of Port Arthur for 68 years and was retired from Texaco Chemical/ Huntsman Chemical with 33 years of service. He was a faithful and active deacon at Shilo Baptist Church where he also sang in the Men’s Choir.
He was a US Army veteran serving in the Vietnam War, a graduate and president of the Lincoln High School Class of 1961, the founder and coach of the Reao Swingers Women’s Softball Team from 1957 to 1988 and later organized the Reao Swingers Men’s Softball Team that he coached until he retired from coaching in 2002, a longtime member of the Black Association of Softball Coaches. Reao was the pillar of what a good father, samaritan, friend and community leader should be. He has helped and has taken care of so many in the Golden Triangle and Louisiana areas and for his good deeds spoken and unspoken, Mayor Oscar Ortiz declared July 8th “Reao Keller Day”.
A visitation is scheduled from 6 p.m. until 9 p.m. Wednesday November 7, 2012 at Shilo Baptist Church. Funeral service is scheduled for 12 p.m. Thursday at Shilo Baptist Church with Rev. Samuel Joseph officiating. Burial will follow in Greenlawn Cemetery under the direction of Gabriel Funeral Home.
Survivors include: wife, Gail Keller; children, Reao Keller, Jr., Carrollton, TX, Tonja Keller Voorhies (Fredrick), Nikki Keller Lamotte (Winfred), Craig Johnson, Herbert Keller, Lois Keller Bias (Napolean), Michael Stevenson, Toddrick Keller all of Port Arthur, TX; sisters, Georgiana Champ, Port Arthur, TX, Gladys Keller Andrews, Maryetta Keller Champ, both of Houston, TX; brother, Melvin Keller (Sally), Port Arthur, TX; grandchildren, Derani Wiggins, Sydni Keller, Reao Keller III, Christina Voorhies, Freddi Voorhies, Falyn Voorhies, Dajah Lamotte, Craig Johnson Jr., Keyuana Keller, Mursades Keller, T’Keyah Bertrand, Taja Linton, Ste’Vonee Linton, Steven Linton, Darrel Ford, Isheia Ford and Christa Bias; great-grandchildren, K’Lei Keller-Jefferson, Izaiah Bertrand and Christian Robinson; brother-in-law, Willie Johnson (Amy); dear friends, Robert Troy, Delores Williams, Fabiola Small, Pam Williams, Paul Roy, Jessie Cole, Lionel Alpough, The Reao Swingers Men’s and Women’s Softball teams and a host of nieces, nephews and close relatives and friends whom he cared deeply for.