Steven Keppen - Volga

Feb. 26, 1949 - March 9, 2023

Steven Michael Keppen, 74, of Volga, SD, passed away Thursday, March 9, 2023, at Avera McKennan Heart Hospital, Sioux Falls, SD.  
Mass of Christian Burial will be held at 1 p.m. Tuesday, March 14, at St. Thomas More Catholic Church, Brookings, SD.  Visitation will be held from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. Monday, March 13, at Rude’s Funeral Home, Brookings, SD.  Rude’s Funeral Home will live-stream the Mass of Christian Burial at website.  You may click on the link above Steven’s obituary.
Steven Michael Keppen was born on Feb. 26, 1949, in Chester, SD, the son of Clare and Mary (Wilkinson) Keppen.  He grew up in Orland, SD graduating from Orland High School in 1967.  Steven continued his education at Dakota State University in Madison, SD, where he played college basketball for the Trojans and graduated with a degree in mathematics.  He received his master’s degree at South Dakota State University.
Steven was united in marriage to Myrna Poppe on Oct. 3, 1969, in Madison, SD. They lived in Madison, SD before moving to Volga, SD, in 1971.
Mr. Keppen taught mathematics for 43 years at the junior high, high school, and college levels.  He began his teaching career at Sioux Valley in Volga, SD, while also coaching basketball for the Cossacks.   
He then taught mathematics and computer science at Dakota State University.  Steve spent most of his teaching career teaching AP classes at Brookings High School where he was an AP Teacher of the Year and received the Siemens Award for Advanced Placement.
When not in the classroom, Steve raised Charolais cattle on their ranch alongside two sons.  Steve’s greatest joy was being grandpa and great-grandpa.  He loved spending time on the ranch with his grandkids doing chores, calving, and showing Charolais cattle.  He also enjoyed watching his grandkids participate in their school sports and activities.  Steve cherished anytime he was with his grandchildren and great -granddaughter.
Steve enjoyed flying his airplane, hunting, fishing, and watching sunsets over Lake Poinsett with a Lord and Pepsi in his hand.  He was always watching the Sioux Valley Cossacks, SDSU Jackrabbits and the Celtics games and listening to the Minnesota Twins.
Steven was a member of St. Thomas More Catholic Church, the American International Charolais Association, the South Dakota Charolais Breeders Association.
Steven was survived by his wife Myrna of 54 years of Volga; two sons, Greg (Janell) Keppen of Volga, SD and Benjamin “BJ” (Katie) Keppen of Harrisburg, SD; his grandchildren, Keah(Nick Hardin) Dixon, Mattisyn Keppen, Braxton Keppen, Halle Keppen; great granddaughter, Ava Hardin, his brothers and sisters, Lynne Kupris, Randy (Kathy) Keppen, Ray (Pam) Keppen, Charlie (Michele) Keppen, Beth (Joe) Chounard, Kate (Chris) Funk, Robin (Pat) Kerrigan; brother and sister-in-laws, Patti Milley Keppen, Larry (Wanda) Poppe, Kathy Poppe, Rod (Kathy) Poppe, Ranae (Greg) Fritz and many nieces and nephews.
He was preceded in death by his parents, Clare and Mary Keppen; a sister, Donna Oines; a brother, Jim Keppen; his father and mother-in-law, Eldon and Elaine Poppe; brothers-in-law Delane Poppe and Dave Oines; and niece, Stephanie Washburn.
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