Aberdeen, SD-Memorial service for Lorraine Chamberlain Keeler, 93, of Aberdeen will be 2:00 pm, Friday, November 8, 2013 at First United Methodist Church in Aberdeen. The Rev. Eldon Reich will officiate.
A private family inurnment will be in Riverside Memorial Cemetery.
Lorraine passed away Friday, November 1, 2013 in her lifelong home under the care of her son Norman and Avera St. Luke’s North Plains Hospice.
Lorraine Coral Chamberlain was born in Aberdeen on March 14, 1920, to Ralph E. and Lessie (Loucks) Chamberlain and, along with her twin sister, was the youngest of their four children. She grew up in Aberdeen, graduating from Aberdeen Central High School in 1937. Lorraine graduated from Northern State University in 1941 with a B.S. degree in Education. Her training path continued, leading to an M.S. degree from NSU in 1959 and additional training at the University of Nebraska at Lincoln and NDSU in Fargo, ND.
On August 15, 1942, Lorraine was united in marriage to Claude Oliver Keeler in Aberdeen. During their 41 years of marriage they raised their four children, cherished seven grandchildren, and enjoyed a full life of friendship and travel with their many Aberdeen area friends.
Lorraine’s teaching career began in 1941 at Barnard, SD and continued for 32 years with service at Gage Rural School, Simmons, Monroe and Holgate Junior High Schools and two summers at NSU.
In addition to her full-time duties as wife, mother, and teacher, Lorraine pursued her passion for service to her church and community. She served for over fifty years as an active volunteer instructor for the Brown County Chapter of the American Red Cross. She earned her Red Cross Instructor Badge in 1937 and taught nearly 10,000 people in the Brown County area in different levels of Water Safety and Lifesaving classes. She also taught First Aid to 2,671 people including firemen, policemen, Boy and Girl Scouts, Scout Leaders, YMCA, YWCA, senior nurses and others. She was very active in First United Methodist Church using her background to teach Sunday school, Bible school, youth fellowship and was Past President of UMW and Altar Guild. Many in the community remember her as chairwoman of the Methodist Rummage Committee for 25 years, raising thousands of dollars for Church Missions. Lorraine was a Past President of Garfield PTA, Aberdeen Education Association, Aberdeen Area Retired Teachers Association and was a longtime Vice President of the South Dakota Retired Teachers Association. She was a life member of NEA, South Dakota Retired Teachers Association, American Legion Auxiliary, Brown County Historical Society and a member of Phi Delta Kappa. Her lifetime of service was officially recognized in 2000 when she was chosen First Lady of Aberdeen by Beta Sigma Phi who select outstanding individuals based on service in areas of Culture, Church, Education and Politics.
Lorraine will be lovingly missed by her children, Norman of Aberdeen, Chuck and wife Barbara (Benning) of Maple Grove, MN, Claudia and husband Dwight Fast of Aberdeen, and Kris and wife Barbara (Buie) of Greensboro, NC. She is also survived by six grandchildren and eight great-grandchildren.
She was preceded in death by her parents, husband, siblings, Robert Chamberlain, Cheryl Myers, Lessie Wardwell, daughter-in-law Carolyn (Rohlfing) Keeler, and grandson Clinton Fast.
In lieu of flowers, Lorraine requested that any memorial be sent to the sender’s charity of choice
Carlsen Funeral Home and Crematory of Aberdeen.