Adelphian Seal Adelphian Academy Alumni Scrapbook
1905 - 1987 "Where Education is Life"       

Keith Hannah
Class of 1961

Keith Hannah

Keith was drowned in Lake Michigan around 1971.

This tragic incident took place on a Sabbath afternoon walk. In late fall or early winter, Keith, with his wife Pam and their children were walking with John and Deloris (Wilson) Vaden—also AA alumni—on a long pier that jutted out into Lake Michigan near Andrews (where Keith and his family lived at the time). Drawn by the exceptionally high waves , the Hannahs and the Vadens, children in hand, ventured out on the St Joseph Pier to get a close look at the waves. Their little dog was swept in to the channel side of the pier, which of course is the St. Joe River and Keith dove in to the channel side of the pier to save the family's dog.

Thinking only of how inconsolable his kids would be if the dog drowned, Keith dove into the water to save it (a typically selfless act).

At that particular place, there is a strong undertow, and Keith was swept away from the pier. He was wearing heavy hiking boots with leather laces, which he tried several times to untie. John didn't know how to swim, and Deloris was in the very late stages of pregnancy. So, although they both wanted to try to help, Keith told them not to come into the water. It was very cold, and they were all bundled in winter clothes; Keith was afraid that they would all drown. Due to the extremely cold water and the strong current, Keith was unable to get to shore.

Ironically, the dog made it safely on its own.

Keith had just been hired by Andrews University to teach there. He had completed class work for his doctorate, and was close to defending his dissertation; economics.

The Hannah's youngest son is principal of Shenandoah Adventist Academy.

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