After many years of serious health challenges, Keith’s bright spirit sped from his old “clay jar” toward his heavenly home in the wee hours of March 16, 2021. Born June 9, 1931 in Somers MT to George Dunstan and Dorothy Odell Walsh, the family moved to Libby in ’41 where Keith attended school playing basketball and football. Here he met the love of his life, Patricia Kessel whom he’d marry after he graduated from Libby High School in 1950. He worked for J. Neils in the box factory prior to enlisting in the Air Force. He was stationed at March Airforce Base where he served 4 years and 4 more in the reserves. The young couple returned to Libby in ’55 where Keith began working various jobs at the mill beginning as a welder and closing out his career as maintenance leadman. After 43 years with J Neils, St Regis and Champion, he retired in 1993.
Keith was truly devoted to his beloved Libby! He was a member for 39 and served as an “Exalted Ruler” of the Libby Elks Club in ‘73, Cub Scout Master (for many years), helped build the 1st Pinewood Derby Track, collaborated to start little league, Babe Ruth Baseball and finally American Legion Ball where he coached for 15 yrs. Keith was a member for 59 years and in ’71, served as Commander of the American Legion Post #97. During his tenure, he helped with “Operation Christmas” flying 4000 Libby Christmas Trees to the troops in Viet Nam. Keith treasured this memory and the government citation which he personally received for it. It still adorns one of the many family room shelves alongside various community awards, including dozens of golf and bowling trophies. Keith served as chairman of the board in the early days of Cabinet View Country Club and prior to and after retiring, he enjoyed golfing with so many wonderful friends.
Keith was preceded in death by 3 siblings, George, Marv and sister Geri.
Keith is survived by his wife Pat of 68 year; 2 sons, Brian “H” (Laurie) of Peoria, AZ who returned to Libby in 2018; Darren (Julie) and their daughters, Liz and Kelly of Seattle, WA; a brother Russ, AZ; many cousins, nieces and nephews who loved him living in the U.S. and Canada.
A Christian memorial with military honors will take place this summer; date TBA. In lieu of flowers, memorials in Keith’s honor may be sent to Christ Lutheran Church 200 W. Larch. Arrangements are by Schnackenberg Funeral Home in Libby. Online condolences and memories may be shared at www.schnackenbergfh.com.
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