10254 W. Carlton Bay | Garden City, ID 83714

Anne Michele Keller November 25, 2021

Anne “Michele” (Dargi) Keller passed away peacefully at home on November 25th after a hard-fought two-year battle with cancer.  Michele was born in Latrobe, Pennsylvania to Michael Dargi and Anne (Kondrich) Dargi.  She was preceded in death by her parents and her son, Jimmy.

After graduating from Latrobe High School, Michele earned her degree from Waynesburg University, Waynesburg, Pennsylvania, where she majored in elementary education.  Immediately upon graduation, she began teaching 3rd, 4th and 5th grades in the Latrobe School District, loving every moment of it and developing a passion for challenging her students to excel, be creative and question for better understanding.

While attending Waynesburg, she met and fell in love with Jim Keller and they married Thanksgiving weekend in 1976.  What was booked as a warm, sunny honeymoon in Hilton Head, SC turned into a long story of cold wet weather, a speeding ticket and a $150 burned out alternator; and the love story lasted more than four decades.

Soon after marriage, Jim’s work took them from western Pennsylvania on a colorful journey to Tazewell TN, Ponca City OK and Houston TX in the US and London England and Dubai UAE overseas.  Always interested in history and anthropology, Michele enjoyed the travel afforded them in the Middle East, Asia and Europe, not to mention the shopping opportunities she discovered in the Dubai gold souk, Asian jewelers and British antique dealers.

Wherever they lived, Michele enjoyed making a house a home, evident in her knack for decorating.  She was renowned among family and friends for her ability to dress up her home for every holiday on the calendar.  Easter, July 4th, Halloween and her specialty Christmas Bingo party, to name a few.  Decorative pillows, intricate floral and character arrangements woven into light fixtures – even costumes for her dogs – were legendary.  Her collection grew every year, and when Michele and Jim moved to Boise in 2018, closets full of carefully labeled and packed boxes of holiday décor made the move.

Michele was an avid and accomplished tennis player, an activity that was the source of many long-standing friendships.  The little five-footer had a wicked forehand and was a spunky powerhouse.  A natural athlete, after hip surgery she transitioned to the gentler sport of golf and continued to enjoy the camaraderie of a weekly game.

A self-taught seamstress, Michele started sewing as a hobby to make replicas of expensive department store clothing for her children.  Her skills grew to include home décor and expanded to sewing intricate dance costumes for her daughter, Liz’s,  ballet performances.  In time, her sewing prowess led to her making costumes for a cast of dancers with the Houston Repertoire Ballet over a span of more than 20 years.  It wasn’t unusual to walk into the house during Nutcracker season and see dozens of costumes and tutus hanging on the fireplace mantle and throughout the living room.

With a wide smile and big, sparkling blue eyes, Michele was gregarious and never met a stranger.  Her heart, though, belonged to her family – her husband of 45 years, Jim; her first-born son, Jimmy; and her baby girl, Liz.  That love of family grew bigger when Liz married her husband, Rob Perkins, in 2017…and even bigger when she became “Mimi” to granddaughter, Birdie, in 2020.  She had a strong influence in her children’s lives, sharing her love of sports and dance, and her knowledge of science, the arts and education.  Jimmy was a competitive swimmer in high school and earned his degree in geology at Ole Miss.  Liz spent her teen and young adult years traveling around the states training for and becoming a professional ballet dancer and now owns a classical ballet school and studio in the Boise area.  Birdie already shows signs of her Mimi’s independent nature and love of painting and drawing, and there will always be a reminder – from their smiles in photographs – that they shared a joy of life and a love for their dogs – Rudy, Gonzo and Larry.




  1. REPLY
    Ruthie Dodson says

    Michele is a beautiful soul and an absolute joy to have had as a friend. I’m heartbroken for your families loss. She was a treasure here on earth and I’m pretty sure she’s in the afterlife getting things set up to her liking! Sending love and healing prayers to Liz, Jim and rest of the family 🙏

  2. REPLY
    Sherri Hall says

    Jim and Liz. I am so sorry to hear of Michele’s passing. Sending heartfelt condolences.

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    Jennifer Hilton says

    I am so sorry for your sorrow and loss. I know Anne is smiling somewhere, as she watches over all of you. Anne was a gem and she will be greatly missed.

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    Doris Powers says

    Jim and family, our thoughts and prayers are with you during this difficult time.

    CHARA Board Members

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    Tom Knudson says

    Words are never enough at a time like this Jim but Candy and I are praying for you and your sweet family. Blessings, Tom

  6. REPLY
    Tom Knudson says

    Words are never enough at a time like this Jim but Candy and I are praying for you and your sweet family. Blessings,

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    Laura Greenwood says

    I am so sorry for your loss! Know that you are in my thoughts and prayers during this difficult time.

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    Denise Doctor says

    Jim and family,

    So very sorry for your loss. The obituary is beautiful and shows what a wonderful person you had in your lives.

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    Sandi Severson says

    Sending my sympathy to Jim and everyone in the Keller family. Heaven has another angel watching over you all.

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    Barbara Kahn Sheffield says

    What a beautiful obituary, truly fitting for a lovely lady. So sorry for your loss. My heart is with you and your family.

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    Bob Dale says

    Jim , It is always a sad thing to learn of the loss of a spouse and I know the family and friends around you can only do so much to make things better. I know because I am going through that same experience and time is helping but very very slowly. I have missed your friendly nature since your move to Boise but we do bring up your name frequently. We are reaching that age where those friendships are as important as family, they both make getting through the tough times possible. Again muy sympathy for your loss and keep in touch my friend

  12. REPLY
    Bryant Rex Daniels says

    Jan and I will always remember our good fun times w Michele, and especially our cruise down the Danube River. Since Michele and Jim moved to Boise, we have missed our traditional Sunday morning golf outings w Michele and Jim and the July 4th parties they held. While we miss her the memories will last a lifetime.

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    Rhonda Dowhin says

    As one who truly understands the loss, I’m completely heartbroken for your family. Michele was so kind, fun, and giving. Wonderful memories will keep her alive in our hearts. She threw amazing parties, everything always perfect and always so thoughtful of everyone included. She will not be forgotten.

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    Lavoin Ballinger says

    Jim, Peggy and I are so sorry to hear of your loss. We fondly remember our dinner together prior to your initial expatriate assignment. All the best to you and your family.

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    Greg Podany says


    So sorry to hear this news. I remember sharing some times with you and Michele at the Burg, seems like yesterday. Hope you and your family find the strength and comfort in the coming days and years.

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    Eileen MacDonald says

    Our deepest condolences – Michelle is now with Jimmy. A small bit of comfort. Michelle will be missed by so many.

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    Tresa Hohmann says

    Jim, I’m so sorry about the cancer diagnosis and the struggles that followed. While I didn’t know Michele, she sounds like such an accomplished and interesting woman, who loved family and friends and having fun. Hoping your wonderful memories bring you comfort and peace.

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