Wonderful, witty, wise. Intelligent, insightful and full of integrity.
These are just a few of the words used to describe Keith Baylor, but the ones he cherished most were a loving husband, devoted father, and staunch follower of Jesus.
Keith Baylor was content to be behind the scenes, doing what needed to be done, whether it was as a provider and protector of his family, a dedicated employee, or a volunteer in an organization. He was responsible, reliable and resourceful. He was proud to provide for his family, to lead by example and to work diligently.
Keith was a lover of knowledge, having started reading at the age of 4, he expanded his knowledge with encyclopedias and non-fiction books. Surprisingly, he was able to remember almost everything he had read or learned and had encyclopedic knowledge of so many subjects and loved to share this information with others, especially his children, Kathryn and Alex. He was admired by his family, friends and colleagues for his intelligence.
From an early age, he enjoyed learning about space, the Mercury and Apollo missions, and NASA. He took his family to listen to speeches by former astronauts and visited several museums related to the space program.
Keith was an amazing and devoted father to Kathryn (21) and Alex (18), and they admired, loved and respected him. He was a hero to them, and they were the apple of their father’s eye. He was so proud of the young adults they had become, and he admired their quality of character, faith, intelligence, musical and acting skills, and humor. The best times of her life were those spent with her family.
Keith’s children shared his passion for history, and with him loved visiting historic sites and pageants, the Cummins Archive & Cummins Heritage Center, the Belle of Louisville, the Howard Steamboat Museum, the Museums of the air and space, etc. He taught Kathryn and Alex many facts and encouraged their love of learning. As a self-taught historian, he took it upon himself to volunteer countless hours at the Cummins Archive & Cummins Heritage Center. His dream job would have been to lead these historic entities, and he enjoyed taking tours and highlighting Cummins’ history to new employees and visitors.
An entertaining storyteller, Keith used the right words to spark interest and embellish a story. His attention to detail, turn of a sentence and timing always delighted his listeners and often made them laugh when he was done. His ability as a storyteller has been particularly appreciated by his family and friends, and family reunions without him will never be quite the same.
A Purdue University graduate with a bachelor’s degree in aeronautical and astronautical engineering, Keith’s family liked to call him a rocket scientist. He served as an officer in the USAF, first at SAC Headquarters, Offutt AFB, in the trajectory engineering branch, then at Whiteman AFB in Minuteman Maintenance. Having learned so much about the history of missile programs, he contributed a great deal of technical and historical data to David Stumpf’s book, Minuteman: A Technical History of the Missile That Defined American Nuclear Warfare; much of his contribution can be found in the online appendices.
After the USAF, Keith began working as an engineer with Cummins in 1993. Most of his 28 and a half years at Cummins were spent designing and carrying out performance work for government and military applications, typically with the V903. As the most experienced V903 and V903 Product Validation Officer, Keith has nearly three decades of Cummins experience, his fluency with colleagues and customers and his extensive knowledge will be sorely missed.
For all his accomplishments, drummer and percussion leader, graduate in aeronautical and astronautical engineering from Purdue, USAF officer, engineer Cummins, he considered his greatest achievement to be being the devoted husband of Connie (Kiviniemi-Baylor) and the loving dad of Kathryn Faith and Alex David, the apple of his eye and his pride and joy. They are blessed to have had Keith, or as they lovingly called him, King Julian, as their dad husband and are blessed to be able to continue his legacy of love, faith and integrity.
Keith was born April 4, 1962 in Salem, Indiana, to Judy and Charles Baylor. He grew up in Scottsburg, IN, graduated from SHS in 1980, married Connie Frances Kiviniemi on August 6, 1983 (or, as Keith liked to say, the anniversary of the day the United States dropped the bomb atomic on Hiroshima), and is a graduate of Purdue University. in 1984. Keith and Connie celebrated their 38th wedding anniversary this year and reportedly celebrated their 40th dating anniversary on October 4. They have two incredibly talented and intelligent children, Kathryn Faith, born in 2000, and Alex David, born in 2002, who are best friends in the world.
Keith was predeceased by the brothers, David and Tommy; his parents, Judy & Charles just 3 weeks before his own death, and several other extended family members. Keith was a devoted son who took care of his parents, even sacrificing his own life to care for them as they wished. Having dedicated his life to others, lived out his Christian faith and treated everyone he met with kindness and respect, it is only fitting that on September 24 he hears these words from his Savior and Lord Jesus Christ: “Well done. , good and faithful servant. “To God all glory, honor and praise forever. Connie, Kathryn and Alex thank God for the blessing that Keith has been for them and will continue to be for them. They thank Keith for to be a devoted and loving husband and dad and an intelligent, insightful and upright man who has taught them a lot and guided by godly example. Keith’s family thank you for your many prayers and displays of love and support all through this almost unbearable month and months to come, God bless you mightily.
In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to Centra Credit Union’s Baylor Scholarship Fund using member # 85295949, the Howard Steamboat Museum in Jeffersonville, IN, and the American Truck Historical Society in Kansas City, MO. Many thanks for all the contributions you make in memory of Keith.
The funeral service celebrating Keith’s life will be held at 10 a.m. on Friday, October 1, 2021, at the Shrine of First Christian Church, 531 Fifth Street, Columbus; Pastors Tony Gore and Al White will officiate.
Family and friends can gather for tours from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. on Thursday, September 30, 2021, in the Chapel of First Christian Church.
Keith will be buried in Flat Rock Baptist Cemetery with full military honors by the US Air Force Ceremonial Unit and Bartholomew County Veterans Honor Guard.
Online condolences and special memories can be shared with the family and a video tribute can be viewed at barkesweaveglick.com.