Keith Lenor Kopperud was born February 28, 1952 in a snowstorm to Marlin and Verna (Edwards) Kopperud of Westbrook, Minnesota. With his older brother Russell, he was baptized and confirmed at Old Westbrook Lutheran Church, the country parish just miles from their farm. Together with aunts, uncles, and cousins on both sides of the family, they raised crops and livestock and shoveled a lot of grain and snow by hand.
Keith graduated from Westbrook High School and studied music at Morningside College in Sioux City, Iowa. There he met vocalist Cheryl Andrews on her very first day of school, and they married December 21, 1974. Together, they shared a love of music and family, teaching for 33 years in the elementary and middle schools and raising their children, Kristine and Kenneth, in Wayne, Nebraska. Keith loved good music, the Minnesota Twins, and general craftiness, helping family and friends with household projects big and small. He especially enjoyed playing tuba with the quintet A Touch of Brass 1985-2006.
Family was the focus of Keith’s life, and he could always be counted on to scramble eggs for family breakfast first thing in the morning, walk babies, and run to McDonald’s for coffee at any hour. He loved sour-cream raisin pie, camping, fishing, reading, railing against a certain political party, tinkering among his many tools, and visiting with family and friends. He died at home in Alexandria, Minnesota, where he and Cheryl had retired, on February 26, 2016, just shy of his 64th birthday.
He is preceded in death by his parents, Marlin and Verna, and daughter Kari Ann Kopperud. He is survived by his wife and faithful companion, Cheryl, brother Russell (Paula) Kopperud, children Kristine (Ryan) Jepsen and Kenneth (Alison) Kopperud, parents-in-law Frank and Betty Andrews, nephews Bryce (Audrey) and Joel Kopperud, and Tyler (Lindsay) and Mitchell Andrews, several aunts and uncles, and dozens of cousins. He has two granddaughters, Eliza Jepsen and Kora Kopperud, and a new little grandson, Kaden Kopperud.
Tribute may be made in support of Minnesota Public Radio -- programming Keith listened to every morning and often through the night. And please support music in your local schools. Keith always said that when you learn to play an instrument, you’re a member of ‘the band’ for life.
If inclined, you may honor Keith by contributing to Minnesota Public Radio. Quality radio was in many ways his religion.
When you learn to play an instrument, you're a member of 'the band' for life.
Please contact me for a current mailing address for the family.