L. Keith Appel – 69


Forreston, IL, L. Keith Appel, age 69, passed away Tuesday July 11, 2017 in his home. Keith was born December 6, 1947 in Freeport, IL the son of Leonard H. & Edna M. (Albright) Appel. Keith graduated from Mt. Morris High School class of 1965. Keith was drafted into the US Army in December of 1967. He was part of the 82nd Airborne Division and served on a mobile artillery unit in the Vietnam War. He earned several medals, including the National Defense Service, Army Commendation, Vietnam Campaign, and Vietnam Service with 4 bronze service stars that signify his participation in 4 of the 17 designated campaigns of the Vietnam War. His patriotism he learned in the Army never left him as friends and family will attest.
Keith was a life long member of the VFW Post 8739. He was also an active member and supporter of the NRA, the Illinois State Rifle Association, and Ogle County Farm Bureau.
Upon his return from the service, he assisted his father in the family farm operation until the 1980s. After getting out of active farming, Keith did trucking and worked at a farm store. Keith retired in 2010 after 16 years with the Illinois Department of Natural Resources at Castle Rock State Park and Lowden Miller State Forest.
Keith was a loving and kind-hearted man who loved spending time with family and close friends. He always enjoyed a good story and a good laugh. He took pleasure in carpentry projects, target shooting, hunting, and fishing.
Keith will lovingly be remembered by his children Brianne (Bryan) Tallyn, Jason (Jennifer) Appel; stepchildren Steve (Brenna) Francisko, and Jenny Lee. Keith will also be fondly remembered by his five grandchildren, Keeana and Kaden Lee, Dylan Francisko, Brooklyn Tallyn, and Vivian Appel with two little ones on the way, former spouse and friend, Kathryn Appel.
Preceded in death by parents Leonard and Edna Appel; as well as his brother as a newborn, Adon Appel.
Funeral Service will be Monday July 17, 2017 at 10:30 A.M. in Finch Funeral Home, 405 East Hitt, Mt. Morris, IL, with Rev. Frank Lay officiating. Burial will be in Oakwood Cemetery, Mt. Morris, IL. Visitation will be Sunday July 16, 2017 from 5:00 P.M. until 7:00 P.M. in Finch Funeral Home.
Those who so desire may make memorial donations in memory of Keith to the VFW Post 8739.

13 thoughts on “L. Keith Appel – 69”

  1. I’ve just lost a best friend and classmate. In mostly the last 5 years or so, we have become wonderful friends. We learned that we had so many things in common and similar interests. I’m experiencing a great loss in my life and already miss him dearly. Thanks for letting me be in your life. May God be with you Keith. Ozzie

  2. To Keith’s family, I am Keith’s 2nd cousin . We met in fall ’66 when my family moved to Keith’s uncle Everett’s farm a mile away. Keith and I were not close but got along very well.My wife and I were married sept. ’72 and Keith was in the wedding. A year or so later we moved to Colorado, and still live there. Keith and I lost track for- for a long time,something I regret. Our deepest sympathy , Rick and Vicki(Burd) Whitlock, Glen Haven ,Colo. 80532

  3. Keith was a great friend and mentor. Talented in many ways. Keith showed me the proper procedure to sharpen a chainsaw,and still think of him everytime I do it. Im far from a carpenter but most of my basic skills where learned under keiths direction. Spent many hours with him discussing guns,politics,state business. Broke alot of bread together over the years. Keith always offered something to eat. Went to several friends of the NRA dinners over the past 20plus years. Keith really enjoyed those events,especially topics concerning gun rights. His family meant everything to him and im so sorry hes gone now. I will never forget him and all the great things I learned from him. I know his family will miss him dearly. RIP Keith

  4. so sorry he is gone, He was my first and only love and I am sorry that we never got together. I haven’t seen Keith since highschool in 1965 but we have been e-mailing the past 10 years.Shit, what a loss.emw

  5. We are praying for all of you! We are so sorry! I remember the times that my family spent time in Mt. Morris, visiting, as well as when Keith, Kathy, Steve, Jenny, and Brianne came to visit us when we were younger. A few years ago, I met Jason when he and Keith came to visit. Through the years, he has remained a close friend to my dad and mom. They kept in touch and continued to visit each other. When he visited, he always tried to visit us all! He will truly be missed! I will always remember his kind heart, sense of humor, laugh, and as my Dad’s Buddy from Vietnam!

  6. So sad to hear about Keith what wonderful guy he was, just too soon to be gone. Kathy you have lost a life long friend in him.

  7. My prayers go out the family. Keith and I go back to the 60’s. We have talked by phone several time and visited a few times at the farm. Terry Stiles and Keith were good friend. A real swell guy that will be missed by all.

    Jim Bauer

  8. I don’t even know what to say. Keith (“Appel”) was a great man. I am just overcome with shock and sadness. We have been close friends ever since we served together in Vietnam. When we would get together, we would talk about the good and the bad that happened over there. As our kids have grown up, our conversations have changed to what is happening in their lives, as well as our special and sweet grandkids. Yet, we would still go back to those days in Vietnam. One never forgets time serving our country. Diane and I are so sorry that we are on vacation and cannot attend the funeral or visitation. Brianne—thank you so much for calling and letting us know. I was so sad during and after your call but it meant alot to talk to you, Jason, and your mom.

    Love,

    “Weddell”–Karrol and Diane

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