LCol Rodney Keller, CD (Ret'd)
We regret to advise of the unexpected death of Lieutenant-Colonel R.F. “Rod” Keller, CD (Ret'd) in Guelph on 2 July 2016 at the age of 49. Rod served a full career with the Canadian Military Engineers from 1985 – 2011.
Rod was was born in Kitchener, ON but moved to Guelph at a young age. He attended Guelph Collegiate Vocational Institute and joined the Canadian Forces under the Regular Officer Training Program after graduating in 1985. Rod graduated in 1989 from the Royal Military College of Canada in Kingston, ON with a Bachelor of Engineering Degree (Civil). He then completed his young officer training at the Canadian Forces School of Military Engineering in Chilliwack, BC.
Rod's first posting was to 22 Field Squadron ( 1990-1992 ) in Gagetown, NB as the Assistant Operations Officer and then field troop commander during which time he qualified as a unit Diving Officer and also conducted an operational minefield reconnaissance in Cyprus. He next served with the Royal Engineers in 22 (Close Support) Engineer Regiment in Perham Down, England as the Operations Officer of 8 (Armoured) Engineer Squadron. Following this assignment he returned to Canada in 1994 for a tour with 8th Field Engineering Regiment (Militia) Edmonton, AB as their Operations Officer and, later, the Deputy Commanding Officer.
Staying in Edmonton, Rod was posted to 1 Combat Engineer Regiment (1 CER) in 1997 to join 12 Field Squadron as the Squadron Second-in-Command on NATO operations in Bosnia-Herzegovina. Upon returning to Canada he became the 1 CER Regimental Operations Officer and then attended both the Canadian Forces Land Staff course and the Canadian Forces Land Command and Staff course.
Promoted to Major in 2000, Rod then undertook French Language training before assuming command of 12 Field Squadron in 2001 and, later, 18 Administration Squadron. During this tour with 1 CER, Rod commanded an Engineer Squadron on Operation APOLLO in Afghanistan as part of the 3 PPCLI Battle Group.
Rod was the Army Engineer Career Manager from 2004-2006 before attending the Joint Command and Staff Programme 33 at Canadian Forces College Toronto, ON from 2006 - 2007 where he completed a Masters degree in Defence Studies. Upon promotion he was appointed as the Area Engineer of Land Forces Western Area following which he served his last tour as Base Commander, Canadian Forces Base Suffield from 2009-2011.
Upon retiring from the Canadian Forces in 2011, Rod proceeded onto a second career. He returned to his hometown and joined the City of Guelph as the General Manager of Operations.
Friends will be received at the Gilbert MacIntyre & Son Funeral Home, Hart Chapel, 1099 Gordon Street, Guelph, on Wednesday, July 6, 2016 from 2-4 and 7-9 p.m. A Funeral will be held on Thursday, July 7, 2016 at St. George's Anglican Church 99 Woolwich St., Guelph at 11 a.m. Cremation to follow.
As expressions of sympathy, donations to St. George's Anglican Church Building fund or to Soldier On would be appreciated by the family. Donation cards are available at the funeral home 519-821-5077 or send condolences at www.gilbertmacintyreandson.com
* The Rod Keller Memorial Golf Tournament was started in 2017 to raise money for a memorial scholarship to be awarded to a cadet from the Wellington Rifles Army Cadet Corps unit in Guelph, ON. This is the unit that LCol Keller belonged to when he was a young cadet. The recipient will be a young man or woman who has exemplified character, leadership and commitment to their community. The Guelph Community Foundation is managing this scholarship.