Cover photo for Michael "Mike" J. Keller's Obituary
Michael "Mike" J. Keller Profile Photo
1948 Mike Keller 2024

Michael "Mike" J. Keller

February 3, 1948 — May 18, 2024

Indianapolis

Michael “Mike” John Keller, 76, passed away on May 18, 2024, in Indianapolis, Indiana. He was born on February 3, 1948, in Indianapolis, to the late John and Lois Keller. He was the oldest of five children and grew up on New Jersey Street in Indianapolis. As a child, he had a paper route on the north side of Indy carrying the Indianapolis News. Raised Catholic, he was an altar boy St. Joan of Arc Church and carried many of the friendships he made there throughout his life. He had many wonderful memories of his family growing up, especially summer days at the Riviera Club and vacations with his siblings.

Mike attended Brebeuf Jesuit High School and was in the first graduating class in 1966. His main mode of transportation in his youth was hitchhiking, which always amazed his kids. Mike majored in economics at Xavier University in Cincinnati, Ohio, a city which he loved, especially the infamous dive bar, Dana Gardens. During his college days, he was set up with the future love of his life, Linda Bowen, who was attending Indiana University. After graduating college, they married in Indianapolis and started their lives in Grand Rapids, Michigan, where Mike was in sales and Linda was a social worker. They enjoyed their 20’s along the Michigan coastline with friends they met in their new home. Mike continued to build his famed record collection, including his favorites: the Rolling Stones, Beatles, Elton John, and other classic rock favorites, and passed his excellent music taste down to his daughter Maureen. Mike was a gifted writer, which was a skill that he would use to start crafting a family history later in life titled, “It’s Always Something”.

Mike and Linda returned to Indianapolis to raise Maureen and, later, their son Douglas. Mike loved auto racing and introduced the unique racing culture of Indianapolis to his children. While Mike was not an athlete, he was a lifelong racing fan and has stories of legendary visits to “the track”. Mike and Doug were also fixtures at Indianapolis Raceway Park on summer Saturday nights watching future racing stars Jeff Gordon, Tony Stewart, and Ryan Newman open-wheel sprint and midget cars way past Doug’s bedtime.

Mike and Linda encouraged friends of Maureen and Doug to use their home as social hub in the legendary neighborhood of Sunblest in Fishers, Indiana. Cul-de-sac activities featured kickball, wiffle ball, street hockey, fireworks, and bike riding. They enjoyed the company of their neighbors who had kids the same age as theirs. “Tornado Parties” in a neighbor’s basement became the norm. Soon after becoming a Town of Fishers resident, Mike served on the Board of Zoning Appeals, perhaps later inspiring his son Doug to serve the Town through its public works department. Mike also leveraged his sales position at Johnson & Johnson to furnish the neighborhood with overstock hygiene and first aid products during the annual Sunblest Garage sale. Maureen and Doug spearheaded the advertising and marketing efforts with flags and signs. Mike and Linda always received repeat business and made many friends during garage sale season.

As his children completed middle school, Mike transitioned from sales to homeowners association management, where he enjoyed working with HOA boards throughout Indianapolis. Mike and Linda enjoyed sharing in experiences of the children’s college careers in both Bloomington AND West Lafayette. On one occasion at Doug’s Purdue Sigma Nu Fraternity House, passers-by could observe Mike and Linda cheering on participants water sliding down a stolen 50-foot Coors Light vinyl sign during a football tailgate.

As Mike’s children became adults, he and Linda enjoyed developing relationships with their new son-in-law, David, and daughter-in-law, Barb. Becoming a grandfather to his grandson Bowen was one of the highlights of his life. Bowen affectionately referred Mike as “Pop” just as Mike’s children referred to his father, John, as “Pop.”

Mike is preceded in death by his parents, John and Lois Keller, and his wife, Linda (Bowen) Keller. He is survived by his daughter, Maureen Keller (David Feinberg); son, Douglas Keller (Barbara Listenfelt); grandson, Bowen Keller; siblings: Jeanne Eby (Brian), Carol Fitzgerald (Tom), Dan Keller (Dorothy), and Tom Keller (Carolyn); plus over a dozen nieces and nephews who loved their Uncle Mike dearly.

Visitation will be held on Wednesday, May 22, 2024, at Flanner Buchanan – Oaklawn Memorial Gardens from 2:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. A memorial service will immediately follow at 4:00 p.m.

In lieu of flowers, contributions in Mike’s memory may be made to the Brebeuf Fund, online at www.brebeuf.org/support-brebeuf/give-online or by mail at 2801 West 86th Street, Indianapolis, IN 46268 or to Friends of Indianapolis Dogs Outdoors (FIDO) at https://donorbox.org/fido-indy or by mail at FIDO, Inc., P.O. Box 3006, Indianapolis, IN 46230

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Service Schedule

Past Services

Visitation

Wednesday, May 22, 2024

2:00 - 4:00 pm (Eastern time)

Flanner Buchanan- Oaklawn Memorial Gardens (Conner Suite)

9700 Allisonville Road, Indianapolis, IN 46250

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.

Memorial Service

Wednesday, May 22, 2024

4:00 - 5:00 pm (Eastern time)

Flanner Buchanan- Oaklawn Memorial Gardens (Conner Suite)

9700 Allisonville Road, Indianapolis, IN 46250

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.

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