Wayne W. Keller


Died March 7, 1939 – October 3, 2013,Valley Forge, PA

College: Silliman
Major: History
Graduate School: University of Pennsylvania, M.D., Medicine, 1965

Widow: Mrs. Joan Bixby, Keller
Bryn Mawr Medical Specs. Assoc.
933 Haverford Road
Bryn Mawr, PA 19010-3839
610-527-0643 (Fax)

Children: Mimi Drake, 1968; Blair, 1970; Grace, 1977; Andrew, 1980
Grandchildren: Will Drake, 1999; Tyler Drake, 2001; George Drake, 2005

Wayne William Keller, MD of Haverford, PA passed away on October 3, 2013 at the age of 74 from complications of cancer. Wayne was born in Wilmington, DE and graduated from The Wilmington Friends School, Yale University (where he was a Ranking Scholar), and the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine. After an internship and residency at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania and two years at Pennsylvania Hospital, Wayne spent 41 years at Bryn Mawr Hospital as a cardiologist. Wayne was known for his comprehensive approach to patient care. The time and focus he put on each patient was a constant, despite the changing pressures of medicine during his career. He put the same amount of energy and hope into a 95 year old patient with a myriad of health issues as he did for a young person recovering from a heart attack. Many of his patients were with him for thirty years or more, and he valued each one uniquely. While Wayne treated some of the area’s most prominent Philadelphians, he equally valued the patients who couldn’t afford to pay him. In his last days, several patients reached out to Wayne to offer to help him in any way they could. Wayne was widely respected by his colleagues at Bryn Mawr Hospital, and he had strong relationships with the doctors, nurses, administration, and support staff. Family was most important to Wayne, and he treasured his four children and their families. Wayne always said that being a grandfather was “the best job around.” His presence on the sidelines at his grandchildren’s games or in the audience at their school performances will be sorely missed. Wayne also cherished his time at the family home in Lake George, NY. Wayne is predeceased by his wife Joanie Keller and his granddaughter Libby Bixby Drake. He is survived by his brother, Francis P. Howland; his daughters Mimi Drake (Tom) and Grace Keller (Stephen Sperry) and his sons Blair (Alicia Lavit) and Andrew (Alison); his grandchildren Estelle Libby Keller, Will Drake, Tyler Drake and George Drake; and his beloved dog Maggie. A memorial service will be held on Tuesday, October 8th at 10:30am at St. David’s Episcopal Church 763 Valley Forge Road, Wayne, PA 19087. In lieu of the flowers, contributions in Wayne’s memory may be made to The Bryn Mawr Hospital Foundation Attention: Nursing Excellence Fund, 130 South Bryn Mawr Avenue, Bryn Mawr, PA 19010 or The Wilmington Friends School, 101 School Road, Wilmington, DE 19803.

My life in 500 words? That’s hard! Let’s start with the basics. I’ve been married for nearly 44 years to Joanie Bixby Keller, a loving wife, companion, and friend. We have four children, all college grads, several with advanced degrees. They are all happy, employed, and doing well. Daughter, Mimi Drake, age 41, a Wharton grad, runs a local hedge fund while being the busy mother of three. Tom Drake, her husband, is a pediatric rehab M.D. Blair, 39, is a C.O.O. for Morgan Stanley in New York City. Grace, 33, works as a drug addiction counselor in Vermont. Andrew, 30, is in private social work practice in Northhampton, Massachusetts, while his wife Alison, works for United Way of Connecticut. They all are socially conscious in their own way and look to the betterment of the world.

There are three wonderful grandsons that light up the day. The grandsons are close by and are a big, happy part of our life. We attend their sports and school events and are continually amazed by their development. More important, they all have a sense of family. We spend summers at Lake George, New York, at the Bixby Home Place which is an incredible six-generation family unit which we all love. It is a great sociological experience as over 200 relatives assemble there at different times each summer.

I’m still practicing cardiology full-time, nights, and weekends. After 40 years, the advances and successes have been astounding but the alteration in doctor-patient relationships is concerning and depressing. Medicine is becoming an impersonal business instead of a profession. The lack of priority government funding for medical research will continue to hold back medical advances so badly needed.

Yale still serves as a beacon for thought. I was greatly influenced by our honorary classmate, John Morton Blum. His progressive views have stimulated my mostly liberal approach to the American way.

So, what’s important? My country which, despite its continued poverty, its inequality, and its other flaws, still represents the best social and political model ever devised. It needs careful tending by all of us. There are many who have not achieved the American dream through no fault of their own. Our mission must be to improve that and make opportunity more universal. My profession, which has allowed me to help the afflicted and, in some small way, further the cause of mankind. But mostly it is my family. These include my loving wife, my great children and my wonderful grandchildren but also the huge, extended Lake George contingent. They have provided caring, compassion, happiness, and love without limit for years.

I’ve been blessed in many ways. Yale provided me with the tools and the thought processes and honed my abilities to serve these three things and for life. For that, I’m forever grateful.