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LDS general authority passes away

A general authority of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints has died.

Elder Von G. Keetch, a member of the Quorum of the Seventy, died Friday due to “a sudden illness,” according to a church statement. He was 57 years old.

Elder Keetch had been serving as a general authority Seventy since 2015. He was also serving as executive director of the public affairs department.

According to his biography on, before he was sustained as a general authority Seventy, Keetch had been serving as a member of the Fifth Quorum of the Seventy in the Salt Lake City area, as well as chief outside counsel for the church.

Elder Keetch received a bachelor’s degree in political science from Brigham Young University in 1984. In 1987, he received a juris doctor degree from the J. Reuben Clark Law School at Brigham Young University. He practiced law for several years, even spending time as judicial clerk for both the Utah States Court of Appeals and as a judicial clerk for justices of the U.S. Supreme Court.

Elder Keetch leaves behind a wife and six children.

The church released the following statement about Elder Keetch’s passing:

“We are deeply saddened to share with you that Elder Von G. Keetch, General Authority Seventy, died this evening following a brief and sudden illness. Elder Keetch has been serving as a General Authority Seventy since April of 2015. Among other assignments, Elder Keetch has been serving as the executive director of the Public Affairs Department. His loss is deeply felt, and we extend our love and prayers to his wife Bernice, his children and loved ones, and pray for the Lord’s blessings of peace to be with them at this tender time.”

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