Joshua Ryan Keppner
Josh (age 33) passed away in his home in the afternoon of September 3rd, 2020. He was with his parents at the time. He passed quickly and unexpectedly.
He was born October 30th, 1986 in Eureka, California to Carol L. and Allen J. Keppner. He was the third son in the family joining his brothers Robert Doyle Burton and Bryce Allen Keppner.
As a lifelong resident of Eureka, he attended Washington Elementary, Zane Junior High, Eureka High, and College of the Redwoods.
Josh loved to tag-a-long with his brothers on local adventures and excursions in the nearby woods. They all enjoyed skateboarding, roller blading, bike riding, camping, hiking, and backpacking. He would often pick wildflowers for his mother, who he loves dearly, and present them to her along with assorted "creatures" attached. He loved the outdoors and was proud of his Native American heritage. During holidays and other family gatherings he particularly liked to hear and tell stories about family (particularly his brothers) and friends. He had his favorites and cherished those family outings and adventures. Every weekend seemed to include some family fun.
The family often attended Black Powder Rendezvous (re-enactments of the American Fur Trade Era) held locally in Del Norte County. On one occasion he and his brother Bryce tied for first prize in the "Pee Wee" Division Black Powder (Muzzle Loading) rifle shoot. They, however, relinquished that honor and the first place prize of a new rifle to a young boy who had recently lost his dad. We couldn't have been prouder of them.
While Josh was an excellent marksman, he never wanted to be a hunter. His great love for animals, compassion, and respect of life would not allow him to kill innocent animals. He had a soft heart and did not even want to see any cruelty to animals. He was planning to volunteer at one of the local animal shelters or veterinarian offices.
He enjoyed family travels particularly those to Lassen National Park to canoe on Manzanita Lake and climb the volcano. Also, the natural wonders and wildlife of YellowStone National Park and Crater Lake were favorites. Also, in recent years he and his parents traveled to Reno, Nevada to attend the reunions of his dad's military unit in Vietnam where he got to meet some of those who served with his dad in combat.
Josh loved his family and friends and made being loyal to them an imperative. Family and friends were the most important to him. He loved to be together with those he cared about most. He was always willing to put others first and sacrifice for them. He was generous with what he had and exhibited compassion for those less fortunate than himself.
Josh had many talents, many of them not yet fully developed. He was quite an artist and an accomplished, award winning Hip Hop Break Dancer and "Popper." He successfully competed in Breakdancing contests and performed in schools, fairs, local clubs, college performances, and on YouTube using the artistic name of "KAZPER." He desired to perfect his techniques and then teach. Many in this performance field call him a "legend" and praised him for his accomplishments and performances.
Josh was no stranger to trial and tribulation. He suffered with addiction, anxiety, and depression. For the last 14 years he removed himself from the environment that facilitated his addiction, focused on recovery, and had made significant progress in turning his life around. Everyday was a battle and his courage was beyond our comprehension. His goal was to completely recover and was very close to accomplishing that very thing. He was planning to assist in the recovery effort of others as an example that "it can be done." A local clinic was assisting him with his plan and was impressed with his positive attitude and perseverance. He was well on his way to fulfilling his potential. His outlook was positive and he looked forward to a more normal life. Lately he and his dad were riding "Quads" on the beach dunes and enjoying the beautiful scenery and ocean air.
Josh was a registered organ donor and was growing his hair out long to donate.
His sky blue eyes, infectious, room-illuminating smile, his loving personality, kindness, genuine caring, generosity, devotion to those he loved, his perseverance, courage, sense of humor, unique insights, and strong ethical commitment to fairness will be sorely missed.
Josh is a life long member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and was close to the Savior prior to his passing. His favorite scripture was Joshua 1:9.
Josh is survived by: his parents, two elder brothers, Bryce's fiancée Khampha, his son Dominik, his Uncles "Bob" and Kris, his Aunt Jody, his adopted Aunt Alice, his nephews Ethan and Aidan, his nieces Mehgan and Rachel, and cousins Jessica, Annie, Hillary, and his loving Chillie, his pet Chinchilla.
He was preceded in death by his grandparents: Mabel Race Keppner, Joseph Allen Keppner, Rosina Faye Baum, Charles Richard "Dick" Baum, his Uncle Lawrence "Larry" Charles Baum, his cousin Monica Chanel Ciarabellini and dear friend Fletcher Lee Byrd II.
Services to be held at The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, 2806 Dolbeer Street in Eureka on Friday, September 18th, 2020 as follows:
Viewing 11:00am and Funeral at 12:00 noon. All are welcome. Facial Coverings Required.
Internment following the funeral in L.D.S section of Oceanview Cemetery
(family only due to Covid restrictions)
If you have any special memories of Josh that you would like to share with his family please do so at Carol's Email: firstname.lastname@example.org or Mail to: Keppner Family 3461 "K" Street Eureka, CA 95503.
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