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Obituary: Melba Walker Keyes

Melba Walker Keyes of Batesville, Arkansas, formerly of Flippin, departed this earthly life at her home on Nov. 3, 2019.

She was born on Nov. 20, 1937, in New Orleans, LA to Boyce F. Walker and Ruth Easton Walker.

She leaves to mourn her passing, her husband of 62 years, James Lyman Keyes of the home; daughter Kendal Lane Keyes (Tom Shearer) of Rockport, TX, and son, Kevin Lawrence Keyes (Keisha Croswhite) of Flagstaff, AZ.

Mrs. Keyes was called “Honey” by her three granddaughters, Shonna Wolverton (Cody), Kendra Webb (Riley) and Deirdre Kisselburg(Dalton). She was the great-grandmother of Raigen, Rawlin, Ruby, Ryan, Tyler, Casen and Conor.

Melba was a 1955 graduate of Gulf Park Junior College and subsequently attended the University of Colorado and Tulane University.

She was married to Ensign James L. Keyes, USNR, on June 28, 1957, at Rayne Memorial Methodist Church in New Orleans. They subsequently lived in Pensacola, FL; Imperial Beach, CA; Newport, RI; Bay St. Louis, MS; Flour Bluff, TX; Agana, Guam; Beeville, TX; St. Joe, AR; Yellville, AR; Flippin, AR, and Batesville, AR.

Melba excelled at cooking, gardening, decorating, entertaining and caring for her family and friends.

When Jim retired from the Navy after 25 years, they moved to 40 acres of hillside land in Marion County. There, she proved that she was a great home-builder, too! Together, they built a modern home which she decorated and blessed with her skills.

A memorial service will be 1:00 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 9, 2019, at First Presbyterian Church in Yellville, Arkansas with Blake Brinegar officiating.

Memories of Melba and words of comfort for her family may be shared at

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