Clyde Andrew Keefer of Atlanta, Georgia, passed away peacefully on March 28, 2023 at the age of 96. He was born to Clyde Roosevelt Keefer and Sarah Jane Thomas on July 1, 1926 in Mt. Pleasant, Pennsylvania. He married Dolores Jean Mahanna from Washington, Pennsylvania on 5 August, 1950. They moved to Georgia in 1956 and remained in the south until their deaths.
Clyde worked in the chemical and solvents industry in and around the North Georgia area. After some years working as a purchasing agent and then a salesman in the industry, he became an entrepreneur when in 1970 he founded his own industrial chemical sales business, based in Dalton, Georgia. He ran this business successfully until retirement in 2004.
In the 1960s, Clyde was very active in the Optimists Club, and served as President of Tri-Cities Optimists for two years. He was very involved in the Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts, eventually serving in leadership positions for the North Georgia Council. Clyde was also a devout Christian and lived his life striving to help others. He and his wife were members of several Methodist churches in Georgia, Alabama, and Mississippi, where they ran food pantries, soup kitchens, nursery programs, and helped the homeless. He taught Sunday School for many years. They travelled to Mexico on missionary trips and participated in the Walk to Emmaus which had a life changing effect on his faith.
Clyde served in the Army Air Corps/Air Force during World War II and was the first in his family to graduate from college with a degree from Washington and Jefferson in Washington, Pennsylvania. He instilled the love of life-long learning in all his children and grandchildren who have in turn held jobs as teachers, leaders, and creators.
He was the kind of parent that wanted his children to have an optimistic outlook on life and made them believe they could do anything. He was extremely well read and always up for a healthy debate.
Clyde was an avid Braves fan and one of his greatest memories was the trip he and youngest son Scott took to Cooperstown, New York.
Mr. Keefer was preceded in death by his wife of 63 years Dolores and his son Richard Kevin Keefer. He is survived by his children: Deb (Keefer) Ramage of Minneapolis, Minnesota; David Clyde Keefer and his wife Rene of Jacksonville, Alabama; Cynthia Keefer Patton and her husband Denny Fitterling of Kansas City, Missouri; Dr. Denise Runge and husband Bill of Anchorage, Alaska; and son Scott Keefer and wife Sasha of Dunwoody, Georgia.
He is also survived by his grandchildren Aimee Danger of Seattle, Washington; Carey Carter and wife Ashley of Dunwoody, Georgia; Shane Tyler Patton and wife Crystal of Kansas City, Missouri; Elizabeth Keefer of Boston, Massachusetts; Josh von Herrmann of Tucson, Arizona; Jacob von Herrmann of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; and Kierston, Kimberly, and Kaitlyn Keefer all from Chatsworth, Georgia, as well as three great-grandchildren.
Clyde is also survived by sisters Janice (Rob) Smucker of Naperville, Illinois, and Nancy (Richard) Krahn of Mentor, Ohio, and numerous nieces and nephews. He is also survived by 7 step-grandchildren; 6 step-great-grandchildren; and 12 step-great-great-grandchildren.
Interment will be conducted at a later date at the Georgia National Cemetery in Canton, Georgia with military honors. The family wishes to thank the staff at A.G. Rhodes Wesley Woods for their kindness and care for our father.
Contributions to a charity of your choice in his honor would be appreciated.