Lyndell K. Massey, who preferred to be called Keith, was born on July 13, 1965 the fourth son to Wayne and Boots Massey in Honolulu, Hawaii. During his childhood, he spent a lot of time living with family in Alabama and getting into certain trouble with his three older brothers, Brett, Bart, and Todd. Towards the end of his father’s career in the Marine Corps, the Masseys moved to Southern California where they put down roots in Newbury Park.
Keith went to Newbury Park High School, where he played football and enjoyed studying photography. He also learned to play the drums and guitar and played in a band for a while. His love of music and especially the band RUSH would play a huge role throughout his life. After high school, he worked at several jobs before deciding that a career in the Air Force would be a means to a steady income and excellent life skills.
Keith entered the Air Force on August 14, 1989 and completed his Basic Training at Lackland Air Force Base in Texas. He trained as a Civil Engineering plumber and as a member of the Special Forces team. His first duty station was at Hurlburt Field, Florida. While a member of Special Forces, Keith traveled the world on humanities missions, drug interdiction operations, and of course the Persian Gulf War where he earned a Purple Heart for injuries sustained during a SCUD missile attack. It was during this time that Keith married his first wife Kelly, on June 8, 1990. Together they had a son, Eric born on May 21, 1992. He served a couple of tours as a member of the Red Horse team in Korea where he developed a love for Korean food and culture.
After his combat service during the Gulf War, Keith continued to serve as a plumber in Civil Engineering at various bases including Luke Air Force Base in Arizona, where he continued his education and earned a Master Plumber certificate. In 2004, Keith cross trained out of Civil Engineering and into Education and Training where he also earned his Bachelor of Science in Operational Education and a Master’s in Education and Human Resources from Wayland Baptist University. Keith’s last duty station was Mountain Home Air Force Base in Mountain Home, Idaho where he retired as a Master Sergeant on August 1, 2010.
After retiring Keith moved back to Southern California where he married his second wife, Abby on April 16, 2011. The two settled in Chatsworth, to remain close to Keith’s mother and Abby’s family. Keith worked as a corporate trainer for Aerovironment and then Rapiscan
Systems. In his spare time, he returned to his passion for music by playing guitar and could be found many Fridays on the local greens golfing with a group of friends. Together Keith and Abby enjoyed traveling the world, cooking, and just spending time relaxing with their dogs Bella and Dashiell.
Keith passed away on June 29, 2021 after a prolonged hospital stay recovering from open heart surgery. He is preceded in death by his father Cecil Massey and older brother Randall Massey. He is survived by his wife - Abigail Massey, mother - Clifford Massey, son and daughter-in-law - Eric and Amber Massey, and older brothers Brett and Bart Massey.
Military Awards & Decorations:
Meritorious Service Medal
Air Force Commendation Medal
Air Force Achievement Medal with 5 oak leaf clusters
Joint Meritorious Unit Award with 1 oak leaf cluster
Meritorious Unit Award
Air Force Outstanding Unit Award with 4 oak leaf clusters Air Force Good Conduct Medal with 5 oak leaf clusters
National Defense Service Medal with 1 oak leaf cluster
Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal
Southwest Asia Service Medal with 2 oak leaf clusters
Global War on Terrorism Service Medal
Korea Defense Service Medal
Humanitarian Service Medal
Air Force Overseas Short Tour with 1 oak leaf cluster
Air Force Longevity Service Award with 4 oak leaf clusters United States Air Force Non-Commissioned Officer Professional Military Education Graduate Ribbon with 2 oak leaf clusters
Small Arms Expert Marksmanship Ribbon with 1 oak leaf cluster Air Force Training Ribbon
Kuwait Liberation Medal from Saudi Arabia
Kuwait Liberation Medal from Emirate of Kuwait