Archived Story

James Thomas McKeel, Jr.

Published 12:06am Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Nov. 25, 1928 – Jan. 29, 2013

James T. McKeel, 84, died at The Fairways at Brookline in State College, PA on January 29, 2013. He was born November 25, 1928 in Washington, North Carolina, the son of the late James T. and Kathleen W. McKeel. In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by his two sisters, Eva M. Warner and Kathleen M. White. He was the last living member of the McKeel clan.
Jim grew up in Washington, North Carolina. He was graduated from North Carolina State University with a B.S. Degree in Electrical Engineering in 1951, and a M.S. Degree in Occupational Information and Guidance in 1961. In 1968, he earned a D.Ed in Higher Education from The Pennsylvania State University. During his student years, he was inducted into Tau Beta Pi, Phi Kappa Phi, and Phi Delta Kappa Honor Societies.
From 1951 to 1954 he served as First Lieutenant in the Signal Corps, U.S. Army, during the Korean Conflict. For his leadership with the Infantry while in Korea he was awarded the Bronze Star Medal for Meritorious Service.
From 1956 to 1964 he was an Assistant Professor in the Department of Electrical Engineering at Duke University, Durham, NC. After graduate school and from 1968 to 1973, Jim held several positions in the Admissions Office at The Pennsylvania State University. In 1973 he was named the Director of Undergraduate Admissions, the post he held until he retired from the University in December 1991.
He was a long-standing member of the State College Presbyterian Church where he served on the Session both as Deacon and Elder.
In addition to his wife, Lillian, he is survived by two daughters, Sarah Youngblood of Atlanta, GA, and Kathleen Welch (Jerry) of Midlothian, VA. And four grandchildren: Elizabeth and Bryan Youngblood, and June and Jacqueline Welch.
Jim was a man of integrity; a quiet and effective leader; a friend and mentor to many; and a gentle and loving family man. He will always be missed.
Burial will be in the family plot in Oakdale Cemetery, Washington, NC at 2:30 PM on Saturday, February 9, 2013.
Memorial contributions may be made to the Mission for the Homeless at The State College Presbyterian Church, 132 E Beaver Ave., State College, PA 16801 or to a charity of the donor’s choice.
Online condolences may be offered to the family by visiting www.paulfuneralhome.com.
Paul Funeral Home & Crematory of Washington is honored to serve the McKeel family.

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