Ronald “Ron” Wayne Keene of Stephens was born July 24, 1949 in Springhill, LA to Ance and Mattie Keene. Ron graduated from Springhill High School in 1967 and eventually went on to Southern Arkansas University in Magnolia, Arkansas where he would earn a total of five bachelor’s degrees with focus in the areas of speech, communication, English, journalism, French, history, drama, art and education.
Ron worked as an adjunct professor at Southern Arkansas University teaching audio engineering. Ron then accepted a teaching position at Walker School District near Magnolia where enjoyed teaching art, French, and history to his students for many years.
His teaching career eventually ended when he accepted a position as a network administrator for the Stephens School District.
Following his retirement from Stephens School District, Ron continued working part-time as a technology coordinator for Lafayette and Strong/Huttig school districts. He served as a member of the Stephens City Council at the time of his death.
Ron enjoyed spending his time surrounded by the people and things he loved most. Ron married his wife, Kathryn “Kathy” Keene, in 1979 and they spent 40 loving years together. Ron and Kathy were blessed with three children to raise: Zach, Colin, and Hannah. Ron loved swimming with his grandchildren every summer. He was adventurous, compassionate, kind and brilliant.
Ron was a talented artist whose skill extended to both painting and music. Ron became a Bare Fact band member soon after graduating high school but the band chose to make changes including the name, and then reemerged as Roadhouse. Following the band splitting ways, Ron joined a new band called Cooterfoot and spent many years playing both on and off stage including a special night when Cooterfoot played back up for Willie Nelson during his concert series in Branson, MO during 1992. Ron spent most of his recent time writing and recording new music in his man cave until he passed on August 1, 2019.
He was preceded in death by his father, Ance Keene Jr.; his mother, Mattie Upperman; and his sister, Vera Jean “Jeanie” Miller.
He is survived by his wife, Kathryn Keene, and his three children, Zach Keene, his wife Kelly, and daughter Korbin, of Bryant, Colin Keene, his wife Erika, and daughter Kira, of El Dorado, and Hannah Kincheloe, her husband Kenneth (K.D.), and son Michael, of Waldo. He is also survived by nieces Carla Whitehead, husband Terry, and daughter Olivia, and Heather Miller and Christina Langston, his sisters Connie Lee, Sharon Lee, and Carol Dennis, his brothers Dennis Lee, Don Lee, Kenneth Lee, and Mark Langston and countless friends, students, and musicians.
Rock on Ron!
Graveside services will be held at 2 p.m. Wednesday, August 7, 2019 at the Stephens Cemetery in Stephens with Bro. Sandy Carter officiating. Memorial donations may be made to the charity of the donor’s choice.
Cremation services were arranged by Lewis Funeral Home, Inc., in Magnolia.