OBITUARY

William Keith Roe

February 26, 1966September 29, 2019
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Keith was born February 26 1966 in Emporia, KS, the youngest child of doting parents, Willa (Houston) and Edward Roe, who preceded him in death.

He is survived by three children, Jacob Christian, Douglas William and Allison Faith, all of Des Moines, IA, and beloved nephew, Benjamin of WV; wife, Anne Marie Roe; two stepsons TJ (Tony) and Shaun Roberts of Atlanta, GA; two brothers, Kenneth Roe of Knox City, MO and James Roe and wife Marvene of Wauneta, NE; one sister, Peggy and her husband Dr. Robert Collinge of Edina, MO, and a host of loving nieces, nephews, cousins, aunts, uncles and in-laws.

Keith grew up riding the streets of Topeka on his bicycle, tromping through the woods fishing and frog hunting with Granny, racing dirt bikes with cousin Mark, playing sports of all kinds especially hours of tennis with Tom, and loving his dog, Buffy. After high school, he enlisted in the U.S. Navy where he served on the USS Coronado with assignments in the Mediterranean, Hawaii and saw live fire in the Gulf War. While in the Navy, he married Lacey Carolyn Root and they resided in Hawaii. After seven years he was honorably discharged and began his secondary education.

Keith graduated from Kansas University with a bachelor’s degree in accounting. He realized about halfway through college that although he loved numbers, he hated accounting and still hated the classroom, but didn’t want to have to start over. After graduation, he began his career with an audit firm, a job he really didn’t like as no one ever wants to see the auditor show up. His claim to fame as an auditor was finding the hidden helicopter in the books. He later worked for a subprime lender and quickly latched on to using technology to replace manual tasks and next worked for a small telecommunications company where he wrote the first code to automate call record counts that revolutionized the industry’s billing accuracy. As the demand to move up in the organization grew, he decided to move out instead. Keith was never a ladder-climber but always preferred to remain what he called a ‘ditch-digger’. He opened his own business installing local area networks for other companes and the business grew fast by word of mouth.

While living in Kansas City, Keith and Lacey complete the long-awaited adoption of Jacob from Rumania. When Lacey’s work opportunity opened up in Atlanta, they moved to Georgia and adopted Douglas also from Rumania. Not many months later, they learned of a sibling, a precious girl, Allison, and made the decision to bring her into the family.

After their divorce, Keith and Lacey both purchased homes in the Indian Hills subdivision where they shared custody of the three children. Keith accepted a position as software developer for Georgia Pacific which spun off BlueLinx where he met Anne.

In June of 2005, Keith was diagnosed with a grade 2 astrocytoma glioma after some seizures that had been mistaken for various other ailments. He underwent radiation and began a chemo regimen. Keith returned to work in the fall and life resumed its new norm.

On October 7, 2006 Keith married Anne Marie (Willis) Roberts at Faith Community Church in Douglasville and Anne moved into Keith’s home.

In mid-2007, after a year of standard chemo and a clinical trial, he was referred to Duke Medical. Dr. Friedman recommended suspending the treatment that was ravaging his body and pointed out that the results had been achieved over the course of the 21 months. That began an 11-year period of the tumor being dormant, annual trips to Duke for observation, and freedom from worry.

Keith resigned from BueLinx and began working for CribMaster, a Stanley Black and Decker Company. With the new work, new challenges. During the next few years, Keith and Anne traveled to Italy and London for the 5th and 10th anniversaries, to Cancun and the Virgin Islands with beloved friends, Todd and Becky, made memorable trips to NYC and the Grand Canyon and several trips to MO to visit with family. In August 2016, Keith started working for AccuLynk who was later acquired by First Data.

At a routine MRI in January 2018, new tumor activity was noted and a biopsy scheduled. Surgery required a cardiac pre-clear which revealed a 99% blockage in a major artery. With God’s perfect provision, a surgeon was able to do an endoscopic bypass surgery that allowed him to move forward right away with the biopsy. Biopsy resultsshowed the tumor had advanced to a grade 3 and chemo regimen was begun. Keith took a downturn due to excessive steroids prescribed for the swelling and seizures. With the skill of a wonderful neurologist, the right balance of medication and therapy allowed Keith to be restored to a strong energy level. He Ubered all over and enjoyed evening walks along the Chattahoochee River almost daily.

However, the tumor rebelled and again advanced. Another biopsy was conducted at Duke the day after Christmas. The results were sobering….the tumor had progressed to a stage 4. Again, the chemo regimen was modified and potency increased. The rigor was debilitating and his body became very weak. Through the oversight of his care team, another adjustment was made and he was able to again regain strength. Some normalcy of life during the summer months allowed him to travel to Iowa for Allison’s graduation. But in July in another routine MRI, 2 new small tumors were spotted. The tumors grew so fast and so large that the preferred treatment of stereotactic radiation could not be administered. Another adjustment was made to the chemo regimen. The side effects were great and on September 9, Keith was admitted to the hospital with internal bleeding.

On September 12, he came home to his peaceful, safe place and on September 29, he breathed his last breath surrounded by his wife, sister and children. Keith maintained a steadiness throughout his illness. He never complained, never questioned why and fought the good fight. He loved friends, family and God deeply. He enjoyed country music, riding Constance (his Kawasaki Concours), dogs, photography, and learning all things technology. He is greatly missed by all who knew him.

Expressions of sympathy may be made in his memory to the following: Faith Community Church of Douglasville - www.fccdouglasville.org; Patriot Guard Riders of Georgia, Inc. - www.pgrorga.com; Golden Retriever Rescue of Atlanta - www.grra.com

Services

  • Memorial Service Monday, October 14, 2019

Memories

William Keith Roe

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Ellen Ward

October 14, 2019

Lifting you up in prayers today and wishing we could be there. Keith was an upstanding man and a pleasure to know. He was always so kind and a joy to spend time with. We have made a donation in his memory to the GRRA. Praying peace and comfort to you during this difficult time.

ERIC GOODMAN

October 8, 2019

I must say I do not know Keith nor have I ever met him, but through his story I am really moved and his story has touched me and reminded me of what Courage and Strength man Possess Rest in Peace!

Lance Snipes

October 6, 2019

Keith was a quiet man of many talents, especially when it came to technical expertise. There was not a task he could not accomplish or one which he would not help you achieve. He had a giving soul and served from behind the scenes, never seeking the limelight or public recognition. A humble and honest soul, Keith stood firm in his fight with cancer and was an inspiration to us all. Now, he rejoices in our Lord's Kingdom and waits for his wife and loving family to join him one day. My prayers for comfort and peace go out for you all.

Phyllis Snipes

October 6, 2019

Since I've known Keith, I never had a birthday or anniversary when he failed to send me a greeting and good wishes. And I rarely got through a church service at Faith Community Church without a hearty hug from such a sincere and gracious person. Keith was indeed one of the kindest people I've ever known. Heaven is now a more perfect place with him present - with our Lord!!! Prayers go out to Anne and the entire family. I love you!
Phyllis

Dot Kriegshauser

October 5, 2019

Anne , Peggy and family
You are in my thoughts and prayers. I didn't know Keith well, but I have fond memories of a Thanksgiving I spent with him in Edina.
Dot

Anne Messimer

October 4, 2019

Keith, You always had a sincere smile and hug for everyone. Your love for our church family was immeasurable and we will miss you so very much. You are free now from pain and suffering. Free with our Lord. Love to your sweet wife and good friend Anne. Love to your children and the rest of your family. May God be with them and comfort them through their grief.

Joyce Palmer

October 3, 2019

Dear Anne,
May God bless you, and your family.
Love, hugs, & prayers to all of you.
Much love,
Hubert & Joyce

Mark Willis

October 2, 2019

He was not only a brother-in-law to me, but also a true brother to all who knew him. Always quick with a handshake, a smile, and underscored with his wry sense of humor, he lived life to the fullest. I would watch him and take note of his quiet patience and how he would absorb life as it happened. He was lightning quick on two wheels.

Michelle Joines

October 2, 2019

Anne,

I'm so very sorry for your loss. My deepest sympathies go out to you and your entire family.
I'm glad I had the opportunity to meet Keith and share a fun evening with the two of you. It's not often that I meet someone in GA that grew up not far from where I grew up.
Please know I will be keeping you in my thoughts & prayers, asking that God comfort you during this difficult time.

Michelle Joines

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