William Jairus Keith, Jr. (1904-1998)

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William Jairus Keith, Jr.
Keith, William J n Allan.jpg
Bill and Allan Keith, Elberta, Utah
Born: 25 Mar 1904 Fillmore, Utah
Died: 11 Sep 1998 Provo, Utah
Father: William Jairus Keith
Mother: Isabella Pratt Robison
Siblings: Bessie Clell Keith
William Jairus Keith, Jr.
Sarah Lucille Keith
Olea Gem Keith
Isabella Lynn Keith
Spouse: Ida Lavon Penrod
Married: 7 Dec 1923 Salt Lake City, Utah
Children: J. Allan Keith
Beverly Keith
William Penrod Keith
Mary Belle Keith
Wayne Penrod Keith
Helen Keith
Karen Keith
Lon Penrod Keith


The Daily Herald on Sunday, 13 Sep 1998, page A6:

William Jairus (Bill) Keith, Jr.

A giant spirit left on Friday, September 11, 1998 in the form of William Jairus Keith, Jr., 94, of Provo, Utah. He was born March 25, 1904 in Fillmore, Utah the son of William Jairus Keith, Sr. and Isabella Robison. He married LaVon Penrod on December 7, 1923 in the Salt Lake L.D.S. Temple. She died August 1991.

He did homesteading, dryfarming, and was employed at Geneva Steel for 27 years. He helped build the fairgrounds, County Courthouse, and many roads. He donated and planted trees all over Utah County. Because of this he has been given the nickname Willy Willowtree. He enjoyed working with his hands and crafted handmade jewelry, hunting knives, lamps, and furniture. He also hand carved canes of which he gave hundreds away. He was an expert gardener and nurseryman. He was honest and hard working and had integrity in all his dealings with his fellowmen.

In his younger years he was active in drama and was a member of an acting troup which toured Central Utah. All his life he delighted audiences with his beautiful singing voice; his last appearance being in the Provo Tabernacle at age 93.

William was a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints where he served as a temple worker for many years. He received an award for having 100% hometeaching for three years. He was a member of the Elder's Quorum Presidency and Stake Seventies. He served as Ward Clerk and High Priest Group Leader. He touched many lives and was loved by all who knew him. He generously gave of all he had.

He will be lovingly remembered by his children: Wayne P. (Velma) Keith, Lon P. (Pat) Keith, Beverly Golightly, Mary Boyack, Helen (Bruce) Beaman, Karen (Jed) Gibson; daughters-in-law: Maxine D. Keith, Colleen Davies Keith; 49 grandchildren; 129 great-grandchildren; ten great-great- grandchildren; and sisters: Bessie Luke, Mary Mitchell, Betty Roberts. He is reunited with his wife, LaVon; sons: J. Allan Keith, William Penrod Keith; son-in-law: Max Golightly; two brothers; four sisters; and two grandchildren.

Funeral services will be held Wednesday, September 16, 1998 at 12:00 p.m. in the Edgemont 13thWard Chapel, 4000 Foothill Drive, Provo, Utah. Friends and family may call on Tuesday evening from 6 to 8 p.m. at Walker Mortuary, 85 East 300 South, Provo, or on Wednesday from 11 to 12 noon at the church prior to the services. Burial will be in the Goshen City Cemetery.


  • Despain, Carrie Robison and Garner, Melba Despain. History & Genealogy of the Franklin Alonzo Robison Family, p. 53.
  • LDS Family Group Record Collection [Patron Section]
Submitted by: O. Stanley Allen
Family of: William Jairus Keith & Isabella Pratt Robison
  • LDS Family Group Record Collection [Patron Section]
Submitted by: Mrs. Helen Keith Beaman
Family of: William Jairus Keith & Ida Lavon Penrod
Occupation: Steelworker, Farmer
  • Barney, Ivan Darrell. Life History of Isabella Lynn Keith Barney, 7 Nov 1987:
William Jairus Keith Jr. born 25 March 1904 at Fillmore, Millard Co., Utah. William married Ida Lavon Penrod 7 December 1923 in the Salt Lake Temple.
  • DeseretNews.com Archives, Sunday, October 4, 1992, Page B9, Obituary: Allen, Sarah Lucille Keith