KELLER; James Arthur (Art), U.E.
Art Keller passed away peacefully at Eden Care Centre in Chilliwack, BC, August 23rd, 2016 at 91 years. Born in 1924 in Camrose, Alberta, he moved to BC in 1936 with his parents Ross and Hazel Keller where his father established Keller’s Garage in Rosedale. As a youth, Art enjoyed exploring the outdoors and hunted and fished with his buddies. With the Second World War, he was active in the Pacific Coast Militia Rangers from 1943 to 1945. He enlisted in the Royal Canadian Navy Volunteer Reserve in 1942 training in both Winnipeg, MB and Saint Hyacinthe, PQ. He served as a wireless radio operator in Halifax until the end of the war. Returning to BC to work in the family business, Art married his high school sweetheart, Bette Lewis in 1947, and established a home in Rosedale. When his father passed away unexpectedly, Art took over Keller’s Garage and operated it until 1982. Together Art and Bette raised 3 children, Norm (April), Maralynn (Gordon Wilkinson) and Glenda (Terry Fisher); and welcomed 6 grandchildren and 4 great grandchildren to the family. Art was a member of the Canadian Legion, Rosedale United Church and served in the Boy Scouts. He was fully involved in the Rosedale Volunteer Fire Department. His name was on the roster when the Rosedale Fire Department was officially organized and registered under the Society’s Act in 1948. Art subsequently served 29 years as Chief of the Rosedale Fire Department until 1977. After Art and Bette retired and relocated to Chilliwack, they continued participation in square and round dances locally and at Provincial jamborees. Together they traveled extensively, undertaking motor home adventures from the Yukon to the Maritimes and traveling overseas to England, Wales, Portugal and Vanuatu in the South Pacific. Art enjoyed gardening, giving particular attention to his roses. An all round handyman, he kept busy with small wood working projects. Genealogy was another of his passions, and he was able to provide proof of United Empire Loyalist heritage. He received his certificate in 1987 and he was pleased to see 2 grandsons and a great grandson receive United Empire Loyalist certificates at a ceremony in 2014. Art was one of the signers of the Charter that created the Chilliwack Branch of the United Empire Loyalists. At its 25th Anniversary last year at the Chilliwack Museum, Art was there to cut the anniversary cake and enjoy celebrations. A Memorial Service is scheduled for 2pm Thursday, September 1st, 2016 at the Rosedale United Church. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Alzheimer’s Society of Canada or an organization of your choice.