A Story of Courage: Cassie Keen
Written by Callie Davis
Cassie Caye Keen was a devoted member of the Brickhouse Functional Fitness Community. She always came and left with a smile, and it truly felt like home to her. During her first visit to BFF, she remembered falling behind in some of the exercises and apologizing to the instructor because she just wasn’t in shape to handle everything they were throwing at her. The response from the instructor was simply “That doesn’t matter, the only thing that matters is that you are here”. Immediately, Cassie fell in love with that mentality and really enjoyed spending her time getting stronger and stronger in each class. What kept her coming back time and time again was the comradery between all of the members of BFF and that special sense of community that they promoted. It didn’t hurt that she loved to wear the BFF gear.
Cassie grew up in Kersey, CO. She was an athlete in High School and earned an All-State award as a setter in volleyball at Platte Valley High School. She graduated in 2006 and continued to stay active by playing volleyball at Western Nebraska CC where she helped them win a National Championship. After transferring and graduating from Northern Colorado, with honors, she received her MS from the University of Galway, Ireland.
Cassie worked as a logistics manager for JBS Corporate in Greeley. She still wanted to keep those competitive juices flowing so she coached volleyball at Eaton HS, Greeley West HS, and NORCO VBC.
She found and married the luckiest man on earth, Mark Keen II in 2017 in Taylor Park, CO. She often said that was the happiest day of her life. They enjoyed the outdoors and spending time at their mountain property above Rist Canyon, camping and four-wheeling.
Throughout her life, she always tried to stay as active as possible and loved that cooperative and competitive nature. When she joined Brickhouse Functional Fitness she found exactly what she was looking for. She encouraged friends and family to check out “this fun gym I found”. And explained that if they didn’t join with her then, “they better watch out, cause I’m getting stronger every day!” That energy and excitement really helped her through the darker days that were about to come.
Cassie was tragically diagnosed with a brain tumor in May of 2018. She underwent surgery to remove the tumor however the diagnosis became worse when we found that it was indeed malignant, and classified as a Glioblastoma. She battled that tumor with radiation and chemotherapy for over a year even trying a cutting edge treatment at MD Anderson down in Houston TX, which was partially funded by the National Brain Tumor Society. Unfortunately, the Glioblastoma continued to grow and took Cassie from us in July 2019. A beloved wife, daughter, sister, and aunt. Cassie was a beautiful soul and is greatly missed.
Before Cassie left us, she made it very clear that if this had to be her fate, then she wanted to help as many people as she could if they ever ended up in her position. She continued to ask doctors, friends, and family what they thought she could do, or offer, to continue the research in the field of Brain Tumors. She asked her friends and family that if they wanted to help, to donate to the National Brain Tumor Society, in hopes that one-day brain tumors will be easily treatable, or even a thing of the past.
We have no doubt that Cassie’s community helped her during her last days. She may be gone, but the community that surrounded her and encouraged her to be that happy and enchanting person is still as strong as ever. We thank you for that overwhelming support, and we are sure Cassie does too.
Help us honor Cassie’s memory by signing up for the Virtual Rockin’ for Recovery 5k on June 6, 2020.