Keith was born on 1 Jul 1957 in Robinson, Crawford County, Illinois. His family moved to North Riverside, Cook County, Illinois when he was 2. Attending public schools, he graduated from Riverside-Brookfield High School in 1975. Using military incentives, earned Associates, Bachelor of Science in Computer Science and Masters in Software Engineering from National University in San Diego, California.
Keith enlisted in the US Marine Corps under the delayed entry program while in his senior year of high school. He reported to MCRD San Diego for recruit training on 26 Jun 1975.
He served with the 2d Battalion and 3rd Battalion, 9th Marines 3rd Marine Division on Camp Schwab, Okinawa for 1 year with 1 float to Japan and the Philippines, then spent 7 years in the 2d Battalion, 6th Marines, 2d Marine Division on Camp Lejeune, NC with 2 floats to the Mediterranean and 2 tours in Beirut as part of the Multi National peacekeeping force. The first tour was scheduled, the second tour was as part of the replacement force after the bombing of the BLT Headquarters building in 1983, the same building where he was assigned just months before.
His next duty assignment again lasted 7 years with Headquarters Company, Headquarters Battalion, 1st Marine Division on Camp Pendleton, Ca. Initially he remained in the 03xx infantry MOS, but serving with the HQ staff in training and education billets. in 1987 after completing a Masters Degree in Software Engineering, he changed his MOS to the 40xx computer field and was assigned to the Information Systems Management Office handling both individual computers and the emerging field of PC networking. In 1990 he deployed with advance elements of the Division and helped established the first in country USMC computer network during Operation Desert Shield/Desert Storm.
His last tour of duty was with MCCTA, MCB Quantico VA, again assigned to the section that handled computers and networking. From here he made a short deployment to Somalia as part of a detachment that provided mainframe support to units stationed there.
He retired on 30 Jul 1995 after 20 years of service, attaining the rank of Gunnery Sergeant.
His awards include the Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal with gold star, Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal with 3 gold stars, Navy Combat Action Ribbon. Joint Meritorious Unit Award, Navy Unit Commendation with bronze star, Navy Meritorious Unit Commendation, Marine Good Conduct Medal with silver star, Marine Corps Expeditionary Medal with bronze star, National Defense Service Medal, Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal with bronze star, Southwest Asia Service Medal with 2 bronze stars, Sea Service Deployment Ribbon with 4 bronze stars, Kuwait Liberation Medal (Kuwait) and Kuwait Liberation Medal (Saudi Arabia)
After leaving the Marine Corps, he worked for several companies, all of them as a consultant in the computer networking and directory services field.
Member of the National Society of the Sons of the American Revolution, West Virginia Society, General Adam Stephens Chapter.
Member of the Sports Car Club of America and races a Formula Enterprises car. (open wheel, open cockpit)
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Categories: Navy Commendation Medal | Navy Achievement Medal | Navy Combat Action Ribbon | Joint Meritorious Unit Award | Navy Unit Commendation | Navy Meritorious Unit Commendation | Marine Corps Good Conduct Medal | Marine Corps Expeditionary Medal | National Defense Service Medal | Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal | Southwest Asia Service Medal | Sea Service Deployment Ribbon | Kuwait Liberation Medal (Saudi Arabia) | Kuwait Liberation Medal (Kuwait) | 9th Marine Regiment, United States Marine Corps | 6th Marine Regiment, United States Marine Corps | Headquarters Battalion, 1st Marine Division, United States Marine Corps | Headquarters Battalion, 1st Marine Division, United States Marine Corps, Persian Gulf War | Sons of the American Revolution