Samuel Sherm Keirn, 17, of South Whitley, Ind., died peacefully with his mother at his side during a doctor visit in Fort Wayne, Ind., at 11:25 a.m. Thursday, May 8, 2014.
He was born Nov. 28, 1996, in Columbia City, Ind., a son of Sherm S. and Diana L. (McNamara) Keirn. He was a lifelong resident of South Whitley. He completed his elementary education at South Whitley and Whitko Middle School and was a junior at Whitko High School.
An active and vibrant member of his special needs class, he was planning on attending the Whitko Prom with his five dates. He had attended the Whitko Fall Formal.
A nine-year member of 4-H, he loved raising rabbits and ducks. He participated in 4-H bicycles and junior leadership. One of his rabbits brought one of the highest auction bids for a rabbit in Whitley County 4-H history of $4,000.
He attended Collamer Christian Church where he was active in the Kid’s Club.
He is survived by his parents: Sherm and Diana; his grandparents: Mike and Nel McNamara, Albion, Ind.; and William and Cindy Keirn, Columbia City; his aunts: Dana (Bobby) Bering, Fort Wayne; and Debbie (Joshua) Norris, Wolcottville, Ind.; his uncles: Doug (Amy) McNamara, Wolcottville; and Ben Keirn, Grand Rapids, Mich.; cousins: Shelby, Allison and Cole Bering, Rhett and Delia Norris, Grace, Catie, Audrie Lynn, Kaia and Abbie McNamara; and four Keirn cousins: Carter, Griffin, Nash and Claire.
Visitation is planned from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. and 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. Monday, May 12, at Smith & Sons Miller Chapel in South Whitley, and from 1 p.m. to 2 p.m. Tuesday, May 13, at Collamer Christian Church, 5850 S. 900 W., South Whitley. The funeral service will follow at 2 p.m. Tuesday in the church with Pastor David Wagner officiating.
For those who wish, memorials may be made to Whitley County 4-H Council, Sam Keirn Memorial.