Keith Reed Memorial Service

Kevin Reed, son of Keith L. Reed Sr., speaks about his father during his funeral service Sunday at the United Congregational Methodist Church. The former Salamanca mayor passed away June 9 at the age of 90.

SALAMANCA — Members of the Salamanca community gathered Sunday to honor the memory of Keith L. Reed Sr., a city businessman, volunteer and mayor for 12 years.

Reed died June 9, 2018 at Hollidaysburg Veterans Home in Hollidaysburg, Pa. He was 90.

Along with his wife, Reed was the co-owner of the former Reed’s Newsroom and Reed’s Cab Service in Salamanca and Wilbert Vault Company in Kill Buck.

He served as mayor for the city of Salamanca from 1962 to 1969 and 1972 to 1975.

Reed was a member of the United Congregational Methodist Church, Salamanca Kiwanis Club, American Legion Hughes-Skiba Post 535, the Masonic Temple and was an original member of the West End Whittlers.

The celebration of life, held at the United Congregational Methodist Church, fluctuated from moments of grief with friends and family in tears to stirring moments brought on by scripture readings, musical performances, a poem reciting and joke-telling.

Rev. Michael Trenchard, who officiated the ceremony, said when Reed’s son Kevin greeted him earlier in the day, he said, “No more tears. Today is a day to celebrate.”

“We gather here today to give thanks for Keith, for his life and just who he was,” Rev. Trenchard said.

Tom Brady, a long-time friend of Reed and fellow Kiwanis Club member, said Reed gave his heart and soul to his family, the city and the people in it.

“Keith lived the Golden Rule,” he said. “We all knew him. We know how much he loved this community.”

Reed first joined the Kiwanis Club in 1968, Brady said. He said Reed always had a kind to word to say about everybody and always had a sense of humor with a new joke every time you saw him.

“His most recent one was, ‘I plan to live forever. So far, so good,’” Brady recalled. “Keith will live forever, in the hearts and minds of his family, of his Kiwanis family and the community he served so well.”

Fred Saradin, another long-time friend who worked for Reed at Reed’s News Room for many years, said they got to see a lot of things go on at the newsroom and he grew to know Reed quite well.

“The News Room was really kind of the hub of the city,” Saradin said. “Hundreds of people came in to shop daily.”

When he was about 21 years old, Saradin said he remembered a disheveled man who looked like he’d been on the street for a few days come into the newsroom and Reed greeted him like an old friend and they talked for 15 minutes.

“Keith treated everybody the same,” he said. “I’ll always remember that about Keith. I didn’t matter who you were. He never raised his voice, never lost his temper.”

Kevin Reed said his father was one of the most loyal and honest people he’s ever known. He said Reed never realized how big an impact he had on the people in the community.

“He loved to laugh,” Kevin said. “He wouldn’t ask anyone for anything except that you laugh at his jokes.”

As a veteran, serving in the U.S. Navy during World War II, Reed was given military funeral honors by the American Legion Hughes-Skiba Post No. 535.

At the end of the celebration, the Legion executed the folding of the flag, the presentation of the flag to the family, the three-volley salute and playing of “Taps.”

(Contact editor Kellen Quigley at kquigleysp@gmail.com. Follow him on Twitter, @Kellen_Quigley)