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Tim Kessler Obituary: Honoring the Life and Legacy of Timothy “Tim” John Kessler

Tim Kessler Obituary

Tim Kessler Obituary:The community is mourning the loss of Timothy “Tim” John Kessler, who passed away on October 10, 2023 in Aberdeen, SD at age 66. Tim lived a life dedicated to family, faith, leadership, and the preservation of the South Dakota outdoors he held so dear. His passing leaves a profound void, but his legacy will live on through those he inspired.

Tim Kessler Obituary: Early Life and Upbringing

Born September 22, 1957 in Aberdeen to Robert and Kay Kessler, Tim was a lifelong South Dakotan. From a young age, he developed a passion for the state’s wildlife and wild spaces. Hunting became one of Tim’s greatest joys that endured throughout his life.

Natural Leader and Consensus Builder

Tim cultivated a gift for bringing people together and fostering trust. He served 17 years on the South Dakota Game, Fish and Parks Commission, gaining appointment by three governors – a testament to Tim’s leadership caliber.

Tim lent his consensus-building skills to numerous organizations, always leading with integrity. He received South Dakota’s Distinguished Service Award in 2015 for his impact.

Commitment to Conservation

As a commissioner, Tim championed important reforms like habitat preservation and access expansion. He worked tirelessly to protect South Dakota’s natural resources for future generations.

Tim’s selfless contributions left the state’s wildlife and outdoor traditions better for all who enjoy them. His conservation legacy continues through this work.

Devoted Husband and Father

Tim shared 46 wonderful years of marriage with his loving wife Amy. Together they raised three sons – Rob, Reed, and J.D. Tim was a generous father and role model, instilling his strong values into his boys.

He delighted in time spent with his 10 grandchildren, passing on his passion for the outdoors through adventures shared.

Celebrating a Life Well Lived

On October 16, friends and family will gather to honor Tim’s incredible life at a memorial service in Aberdeen. All are welcome to pay their respects and connect in Tim’s memory.

Though deeply missed, Tim’s spirt lives on through his family and the positive change he enacted across South Dakota. His enthusiasm for serving others and protecting the land endures as an inspiration. Tim Kessler lived life fully and left his community far better than he found it.


Tim Kessler was a pillar of South Dakota – a trusted leader, devoted conservationist, and loving family man. The void left by his passing will be felt deeply across the state he cherished. But the connections he forged and the values he embodied will continue guiding the way forward. Tim’s legacy burns bright.

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