Keith Wessman Obituary
Keith Hayward Wessman photos Keith Hayward Wessman photos

There are 38 photos in the gallery

Service Information

 
In Memory of

Keith Hayward Wessman

April 4, 1925 - June 27, 2014
Obituary
Biography

Keith Hayward Wessman, arrived in this world on April 4, 1925, to the loving care of his parents, Henry Richard Emanuel Wessman and Hazel Jean Hayward Wessman. He was the eleventh child of 14. He was born in Ogden, Utah. After arriving a little early, he had the loving care of his sister Jean, while his mother’s strength was rebuilt. Keith was put out in the sun often, he tanned very well and earned the nickname of “Brownie”. When he was in first grade (on the first day), he thought that it just wasn’t for him, climbed out the window and hid in a neighbor’s irrigation culvert that was full of pussy willows. He said he heard his father’s car pull up, he had no idea how his father knew or, how he found him, but his father picked him up, put him in the car and took him back to school. He never ditched school after that until, the last day of his senior year. He said that no one did anything but talk and sign year books. He just left, thinking this wasn’t for him. He had a lot of fun with his large family. His brothers and sisters were: Merle, Henry, Richard, , still born son, Paul, Jean, John, Elizabeth, Phillip, Ernest, Gammon, Keith, Norinne, Boyd and Marilyn. Keith remembers fondly the hikes up in the canyons, and coming home to mom’s pot of beans and homemade bread and rolls. They could eat the rolls, but the bread was for lunches. One of his favorite childhood memories was when the family and friends loaded up into two cars and went to the canyons to eat, play ball,...
Keith Hayward Wessman, arrived in this world on April 4, 1925, to the loving care of his parents, Henry Richard Emanuel Wessman and Hazel Jean Hayward Wessman. He was the eleventh child of 14. He was born in Ogden, Utah. After arriving a little early, he had the loving care of his sister Jean, while his mother’s strength was rebuilt. Keith was put out in the sun often, he tanned very well and earned the nickname of “Brownie”.
When he was in first grade (on the first day), he thought that it just wasn’t for him, climbed out the window and hid in a neighbor’s irrigation culvert that was full of pussy willows. He said he heard his father’s car pull up, he had no idea how his father knew or, how he found him, but his father picked him up, put him in the car and took him back to school. He never ditched school after that until, the last day of his senior year. He said that no one did anything but talk and sign year books. He just left, thinking this wasn’t for him.
He had a lot of fun with his large family. His brothers and sisters were: Merle, Henry, Richard, , still born son, Paul, Jean, John, Elizabeth, Phillip, Ernest, Gammon, Keith, Norinne, Boyd and Marilyn. Keith remembers fondly the hikes up in the canyons, and coming home to mom’s pot of beans and homemade bread and rolls. They could eat the rolls, but the bread was for lunches. One of his favorite childhood memories was when the family and friends loaded up into two cars and went to the canyons to eat, play ball, swim, and camp.
His father died when he was six, just a few weeks before he turned seven. Keith’s memories of his father were full of joy and happiness. He remembers his mother and father sitting at the piano and playing and singing together. Because his father was from Sweden and his mother studied music in Germany, sometimes they would sing in German.
Music ran in his family. Some of the instruments played by family members were the accordion, piano, guitar, harmonica, ukulele and mandolin. When asked what made him pick up the accordion, he replied that his brother John had one. One day he snuck into John’s room, picked up his accordion and was trying to figure it out. John came up behind him and started to show him how to play it. Keith played the accordion, and loved it, music permeated his life. It brought him and his wife and children so much joy and peace. He also tinkered with the banjo. During the last couple years of his life, he said that his regret was that he didn’t take his mother up on piano lessons.
His father’s passing was very hard on his mother. Keith remembers walking into the funeral home, at his father’s funeral and there was his mother, playing Livastram, a special song for his parents, and there his mother sat, playing this song for her husband. The family pulled together, the older ones pitching in holding the household together. He doesn’t remember having a bad Christmas, there may not have been much, but there was always an apple or orange and something else. He remembers the holidays fondly. He had a happy childhood. When asked who his father figure was after his father died, he said that it was his brother John.
During World War II, he joined the Navy. He was in the Pacific. He was a gunner’s mate on gun two, most of the time. He was on the USS HAGGARD DD-555. They were hit by a kamikaze, losing one man, and they rammed a Japanese submarine.
After the war he meet his wife, Lilly Marcella Wilson, daughter of Clarence and Thelma Wilson. He joined a band and played his accordion, as far as Tucumcari, New Mexico.
He served a mission for “The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints” in the NORTH CENTRAL STATES MISSION. He took his accordion with him on his mission, and sometimes he and his accordion were all the music to be had. He enjoyed his service on his mission, and even though he was released from his mission, he never quit being a missionary. He has always been active in the church, and enjoyed serving and helping others, helping with girl’s camp, doing flag ceremonies, and always the accordion close by. The girls must have music. He loved being part of the choir, and would take his children to choir practice from their early teen and pre-teen years. He loved the Lord and music.
September 29, 1950, he married his bride, Lilly Marcella Wilson in the Salt Lake City Temple. They had four children; Keith Hayward Wessman Junior (Buddy), Alma Wayne Wessman (Al), April Lilly Wessman, and Georgina Lynn Wessman-Carr. He was a very caring husband and father. Lilly did not have good health and he was her main caretaker until her death, July 23, 2012. Keith and Lilly laid to rest their son, Buddy when he was a year and 5 days, and their son Alma, when he was 37 years old.
He attended the University of Utah for two years, he wanted to be an English teacher. He had to drop out of school to take care of his ill wife and sick children. He loved to read. He would read a book several times.
Keith returned to his heavenly home to with his wife, sons, and family that went before, on June 27, 2014, at the age of 89. In his 89 years, he has lived his life with honor and integrity. He has been an example of, compassion, patience, forgiving, long suffering, giving, and in being kind to everyone. He was a humble man with an awesome sense of humor. He has been and is an example to follow. He leaves behind two daughters, April and Georgina, 14 Grandchildren, 23 Great Grandchildren, and his sister, Norinne Husbands. He will be missed greatly, but will dwell forever in our hearts.

Share your memories or express your condolences by signing the Guest Book below or click here for entry suggestions.

"Papa was a man pure of heart. No matter what terrible mistakes you made he would still love you fully. The best advice giver. He was the ideal family man...." James Denton (Henderson, NV)

Submit Guest Book Entry
This Guest Book has 10 entries. View Complete Guest Book

More Obituaries

Las Vegas Review-Journal
KEITH WESSMAN Keith Hayward Wessman, known also as "Papa" to many, passed away quietly June 27, 2014, in Henderson, at the age of 89. He was born...

Read obituary at Las Vegas Review-Journal.

Personalize Your Tribute

Share photos, videos and more with Legacy Memorial Websites. Find out more.

 

Dignity Memorial Personal Planning Guide

Start Planning Today
Record your choices for your final arrangements along with essential estate and personal information.
Send a Card
Send Meals to the Family

Audio Condolences

Use your phone to dial in a free personalized message. Click here to make an entry or listen to recordings from friends and family.