A. Keith Perry, beloved husband, father, grandfather, great grandfather, mentor, and teacher extraordinaire has graduated, taking his final curtain call January 22, 2018.
Ever the performer, Keith made his entrance with dramatic flair August 6, 1939 in Abergavenny Wales, one of three “Perry Triplets”. Forever proud of his Welsh heritage, Keith was eight when the family immigrated to Canada. By this time the Perry family included his elder sister Lenore, his partner-in-crime triplet brother Leigh, his tolerant triplet sister Christine, and twins Carol and Meryl. His youngest sister, Patti, was born a few months after their arrival in their new country.
With that “always-present sparkle” in his eye, Keith has taken what life has offered and made it better than how he found it. That’s not to say life was all sunshine, lollipops, and rainbows – it wasn’t- but when faced with heartache or adversity, Keith fought hard to overcome. The refiner’s fires – and there were many – of his younger years paid dividends in creating the man he became; the man who went on to influence countless students’ lives and the much-adored patriarch of his own family.
One could say Keith was a bit of a late bloomer, his teaching career not starting until his mid-thirties. However, if you asked his students whether that mattered to them, most would suggest it was his gratitude for finally being able to live his passion each day (teaching choral and drama) that made him the life-changing teacher he was.
Nevertheless, as much as Keith lived and loved his profession, his love of family and faith was even greater. In his younger years he served a mission for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in the Western Canada Mission. In his retirement years he faithfully served along side his best friend and sweetheart Rita in both the Seattle and Vancouver LDS Temples. They were also privileged to act as Welfare Service Missionaries in Calgary. No matter where he served Keith gave 110% and his contagious joy lifted all whom he rubbed shoulders with.
Keith is survived by his eternal companion Rita, who has always been the wind beneath his wings. He is also survived by his children, daughters Charisse (John), Heather (Anthony), and Glynis (Christopher) and son Michael (Sasha). Blessed to call him “Grandad” is Devin (Whitney), Katelyn (Matt), Keith, Michael, Chelsea, Broghan (Jeff), Jaydrian (Stephen), Kody (Suzy), Shandra (Hogan), Ansleigh, Avery, and great grandchildren Hudson and Deacon.
Keith is also survived by sisters Christine (Ray), Carol, and Patti (Artel).
Waiting to greet Keith on the other side was his Dorothy and infant son Keith; his parents Burt and Muriel Perry; his sisters Meryl and Lenore (Larry – also deceased), brother Leigh (partner-in-crime for eternities); Carol’s husband Ron, and grandson Jordan.
Heartfelt gratitude for the wonderful and caring staff at Lakeside Manor and to Doctors Kevin Goldberg and Graeme McCauley. A special thank you to 2nd Floor Nurse Chris, who took Keith’s final steps with him.
Until we meet again…we love you…break a leg Mr. P!
A funeral service was held Saturday, January 27th, 2018, at The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (1400 20 St NE, Salmon Arm) at 2:00pm.
In memory of Keith, a scholarship fund will be established to assist future choral and drama educators. If so desired, contributions may be made in A. Keith Perry’s name at TD Bank in the coming days.
On line condolences may be sent to Keith’s obituary at www.bowersfuneralservice.com