Joseph Edison Keithley Jr. – Obituary

by Lynn McMillen
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Mr. Joseph Edison Keithley Jr., 73, of Grand Valley Lakes

Services for Mr. Keithley will be held Thursday, October 24, 2013 at Crockett’s Bluff (AR) Missionary Baptist Church at 2:00 pm. Burial is in the church cemetery.

A visitation will be held from 5:00 – 7:00 pm, Tuesday, October 22, 2013 at Shackelford Funeral Directors in Bolivar.

Mr. Keithley died Saturday, October 19, 2013 at the Bolivar General Hospital. He was a native of Crockett’s Bluff, AR, the son of the late Joseph Edison Keithley, Sr. and Hallie Mae Gosnell Keithley, who survives. Mr. Keithley graduated high school in St. Charles, AR and received his BA and MA in Engineering (1967) from the University of Arkansas. He graduated with Honors and was a member of Chi Epsilon Honors Fraternity. On June 24, 1967, he married the former Marla Gelene Peel, who also survives. Mr. Keithley was a resident of Grand Valley Lakes for the past 13 years and prior to moving here had live 12 years in Hernando, MS and also in Cordova, TN.

Mr. Keithley served his country 4 years in the US Marine Corps. For 29 years (1968-1997), he worked for the US Army Corps of Engineers where he retired as Chief of the Geo-Technical Branch. He did the initial design work for Tom Lee Park in Memphis and the Riverside Drive area in downtown. He was in charge of the moving of the mouth of the Loosahatchie River where it met the Mississippi River. This change permitted barge traffic to flow better and added greatly to commerce in the area. In his spare time, he enjoyed golf and gardening.

He leaves his wife, Gelene Keithley of Grand Valley Lakes; two daughters, Marla Carrie Keithley Rustenhaven and her husband, Joel, of Hernando, MS; and Carol Jean Clark and husband, Tim, of Grand Valley Lakes; his mother, Hallie Keithley of Crockett’s Bluff, AR; two sisters, Carol Baird of Kenton, OK and Jean Almond of Hot Springs, AR; a brother, Dan Keithley of East Camden, AR; and three grandchildren, Casady Phillips and Tommy and Jimmy Rustenhaven.

In addition to his father, he was preceded in death by a brother-in-law, Roger Almond.

Memorials are requested to go to the Michael J. Fox Foundation or the Parkinson’s Disease Foundation.

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