At the family's request memorial contributions are to be made to those listed below. Please forward payment directly to the memorial of your choice.
Cru (Campus Crusade for Christ)
PO Box 628222
Orlando, FL 32862-8222
Below is the contact information for a florist recommended by the funeral home.
Life Story / Obituary
Keith Gordon was a loving husband, father, grandfather, and great-grandfather. A hard worker his whole life, he proudly gave to his family and church community selflessly over the years. Nothing brought him greater joy than to share in the many accomplishments of his children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren. A retired farmer from what is known as, The Greatest Generation, Keith will be lovingly remembered by all who knew and loved him.
Reflecting on the 1920s, it was a period of sustained economic prosperity highlighted by the growing entertainment industry. Radio stations were growing in operation throughout the US, the media was focused on jazz music and celebrities, and at the brink of what would be known as the Roaring Twenties, Samuel and Annie Hazel (Kirkpatrick) Gordon welcomed home their newborn son, Keith, on September 18, 1921, in Waterman, Illinois. Born to a well-known farmer in town and a wonderful homemaker, his birth brought great joy into the hearts of his loving parents.
Keith lived a typical childhood of the times. The first seven years of his schooling was in a one-room country schoolhouse. He set off for Waterman High School where he later graduated. Keith’s father nicknamed him, Delbert, in honor of a young friend who died in WWI. Throughout his life, Keith used Delbert as his middle name. His father also organized bus trips when the 1938 World’s Fair came to Chicago. Keith and his sister were able to make several trips to the fair which they found very interesting and educational as young children who only knew life on a farm. He often reflected on that special moment from his childhood.
Not to be forgotten was the meeting of the woman who would steal his heart, Shirley F. Olsen. Eager to spend the rest of their lives together, they joined in marriage on October 25, 1945, and settled on a farm in Waterman. Their eldest daughter, Sherry was born here before they relocated to Shabbona, Illinois were their daughter, Sandy, and son, Kevin, were born. He and Shirley raised their children with a strong Christian foundation. They were members of the Waterman Bible Church where Keith was a charter member as well as served as a deacon, teacher, and a soloist. Parishioners could not forget the beauty of his voice and looked forward to hearing him sing each and every weekend. Active with his faith community, he modeled a life of serving. He was thrilled to have his children grow up on a farm just the way that he did. Keith knew that farming alone was one of life’s greatest teachers.
After many prosperous years of farming, Keith sold all of his equipment and moved his family back to Waterman and took a job as a factory worker and as an elementary school janitor. He was well-liked by co-workers for his special sense of humor and ability to always look on the positive side of things. Shortly after his wife, Shirley died in 1987, Keith traveled to Florida to visit his brother. Social by nature, he took a trip to a Moody Keswick Bible Conference and met a retired school teacher, Doris Hageman, who was also single. Dating for just nine months, they knew they were meant to be together and joined in marriage at the Elim Evangelical Free Church in Oaklawn. After honeymooning and enjoying the start of the fall season in the beautiful area of Door County Wisconsin, they settled in with Doris’ mother for a year while their new home in Waterman was being built. They both enjoyed one another’s company and took many trips to Florida together. Many years later, they eventually relocated to Covenant Village of the Great Lakes in Grand Rapids, Michigan to be closer to children and grandchildren. Keith and Doris both met many special people and made new dear and close friends over the years.
Keith held many special hobbies and interests over the years. An avid White Sox fan, he never missed an opportunity to watch or listen to them and on occasion would head to see them in action! With a knack for writing, he later enjoyed writing countless short stories to pass the time and keep his mind active. He also very much enjoyed keeping up with current events. For relaxation, he enjoyed listening to light classical music and shopping for just the perfect birthday cards for special family and friends. Keith lived his life to the fullest and without regret. He leaves behind a wonderful collection of memories for his family to treasure for generations to come.
After 97 years of a life filled with love and family, Delbert “Keith” Gordon went to be with his Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ on Sunday, February 10, 2019. Keith was born September 18, 1921, to the late Samuel and Anna Gordon in Waterman, IL. Along with his parents, he is preceded in death by his first wife, Shirley [Olson] and their daughter and son-in-law Sandra and Dennis Simmons. He is survived by his second wife of 28 years, Doris [Hageman] Gordon; his children Sherry Wessels and Kevin (Karin) Gordon; 7 grandchildren;12 great-grandchildren and 1 great-great-grandson. Per Keith’s wishes, cremation has taken place. A Memorial Service will be held on Saturday, June 15, 2019, at 11:00 AM at Covenant Village of Great Lakes (2510 Lake Michigan Dr. NW, Grand Rapids, MI 49504) with Chaplain Brian Kyle and Pastor Craig Swanson officiating. Relatives and friends are invited to meet with his family at Covenant Village one hour prior to the service beginning at 10:00 AM. Contributions in memory of Keith may be made to either Covenant Village of the Great Lakes or to Cru, (Campus Crusade for Christ). (PO Box 628222, Orlando FL, 32862-8222). You may leave your memories of him or make a memorial contribution at www.lifestorynet.com.