Charles Ray "Chuck" Keller, 80, of Benton, passed away at 11:43 a.m. on Saturday, Nov. 20, 2021 at the SIH Memorial Hospital of Carbondale.
Chuck was retired from the coal mines, where he worked at Freeman United #6 in Waltonville. Chuck was a United States Navy veteran. He had also retired from the United States Army, and was a veteran of the Vietnam War.
He was a member of the Royalton Baptist Church. Chuck was also a member of Modern Woodsmen of America. He enjoyed dancing, motorcycle riding and golfing. He was a big bass fisherman. Chuck was a loving and caring man, who loved his grandbabies and family.
He was born Sept. 7, 1941 at Tamaroa, Illinois, the son of Leonard John and Rebecca Goldie (Pitchford) Keller.
He married Betty Marie Hatchett on Feb. 14, 2006 at Benton, Illinois and she survives.
He is survived by his wife of Benton; two daughters, Jacki Lynn (Brad) Noward of Pinckneyville and Denise Marie Keller (friend David) of Benton; three sons, Guy R. Steely of Tamaroa, Charlie E. (Chris) Steely of Du Quoin, and John A. (Noma) Suckoll of Herrin; two stepdaughters, Gayla Langa of Salem and Mary Langa of Nashville, Illinois; one stepson, Scott (Jan) Langa of Florida; a sister, Jessie Pestka of Du Quoin; his dog, Lucky Boy; special friends Wilma and Bob, Lonnie and Jane, and Judy; 31 grandchildren; 46 great-grandchildren; four step-grandchildren and one step great-grandchild.
He was preceded in death by his parents; one son, James H. Steely; two brothers, Bob and John; and two sisters, Katherine and Betty.
Per Chuck's request, cremation rites were accorded.
A memorial service will be held at 11 a.m. on Thursday, Dec. 2, 2021 at the Searby Funeral Home in Tamaroa with Rev. Mario Ramos officiating. Friends may call from 10 a.m. until the time of service on Thursday at the Searby Funeral Home in Tamaroa. Military graveside rites will be conducted by the Du Quoin V.F.W. and American Legion and the Army National Guard, at the Antioch Cemetery at Tamaroa.
Friends are invited to make memorials to the American Cancer Society or St. Jude Children's Research Hospital; these will be accepted at the funeral home.
For additional information or to sign the memorial guest register, visit www.searbyfuneralhomes.com.