Keith Stokes Arkansas: Little Rock, Arkansas is mourning the loss of Keith Stokes, a beloved political advisor and community leader who passed away this week at the age of 65. Stokes was best known as a trusted aide to Senator Tom Cotton (R-Arkansas) and as caretaker of the University of Arkansas live mascot, Tusk.
Advisor to Senator Tom Cotton
For over a decade, Stokes served as Project Manager in Cotton’s Little Rock office. He was one of the Senator’s most trusted confidants and played an integral role in Cotton’s political career.
Senator Cotton released a statement honoring Stokes’ legacy and mourning his passing:
“Our state, its farmers, ranchers, and foresters, and our Senate office had no better friend and champion than Keith Stokes. Everyone who knew Keith will miss him dearly. Anna and I join Arkansans in prayer that God brings comfort to his family in this hour of grief.”
Cotton praised Stokes as the consummate public servant who always put the people of Arkansas first. Stokes helped Cotton connect with constituents across the state and provided sage advice during difficult policy debates in Washington. His political instincts and deep understanding of Arkansas issues made him an invaluable team member.
Caretaker of Tusk, the University of Arkansas Mascot
In addition to his political work, Stokes was known across Arkansas as the longtime caretaker of Tusk, the live Razorback mascot for the University of Arkansas. Stokes and his family served as caretakers for Tusk for over two decades.
“Keith was a remarkable individual who relished interacting with fans and taking on the responsibility of ensuring Tusk attended all their scheduled events,” said a university spokesperson. “He held a deep affection for his family, his grandchildren, and he took great joy in being an integral part of the Razorback community.”
Game days would not have been the same without Stokes escorting the prized Razorback to root on the team. His passion for the university and commitment to caring for Tusk made him a beloved figure across campus.
Deep Arkansas Roots
Stokes was a native Arkansan through and through. He grew up in Ola, Arkansas and later lived in Dardanelle. After graduating from Ola High School, he attended Arkansas Tech University.
Beyond his political and university commitments, Stokes was always dedicated to the local community. He could often be found volunteering at community events or helping out neighbors in need.
“Keith embodied the values of living life for others and serving your community,” said Little Rock Mayor Frank Scott Jr. “He impacted so many lives in central Arkansas over the years. Our city will feel this loss deeply.”
Remembering a Dear Friend – Keith stokes Arkansas
While the official cause of death has not been released, reports indicate Stokes passed away unexpectedly last week. He was 65 years old. He is survived by his wife Julie and other family members who request privacy at this difficult time.
Senator Cotton concluded his statement by saying:
“Everyone who knew Keith will miss him dearly. Anna and I join Arkansans in prayer that God brings comfort to his family in this hour of grief.”
The people of Arkansas are remembering Stokes as a man who put service above self, who left his mark on the state’s politics and university traditions. The void left by his passing will be felt deeply by many. But his legacy of community leadership and Razorback pride will live on.
Conclusion – Keith Stokes Obituary
The death of Keith Stokes saddens the Little Rock community and Arkansas as a whole. His decades of public service as an advisor and confidant to Senator Tom Cotton, as well as a caretaker of the University of Arkansas mascot, made him a cherished figure across the state. Stokes embodied the values of living life for others through his selfless community involvement. He will be deeply missed, but his memory will continue inspiring Arksansans to serve for generations to come.