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RIP Keith Jones – A Fun-loving, Strong Friend

For those of you who didn’t know Keith, he trained with Ray Mentzer when Ray had Muscle Mill Gym in Redondo Beach. I also worked with him at Tequila Willies in Manhattan Beach when the regional supervisor approached me and asked me to find some bouncers and Keith was the first guy that came to mind.

Keith was a competitive arm wrestler and made the US Nationals. He was also an arm wrestling and bodybuilding contest promoter in Hawaii. He trained for a while at World Gym and Gold’s Venice and also trained with David and Peter Paul the Barbarian brothers. Training with Ray Mentzer, Keith bench pressed over 600 pounds and did barbell curls for 3 or 4 reps with 315.

He did a commercial with IFBB Pro, Don Ross where they had both shaved their heads. He had dealings with actor Leslie Nielsen, Chuck Norris, Muhammad Ali, Pete Grymkowski (former co-owner Gold’s Gym Corporate), Tim Kimber (former co-owner Gold’s Gym Corporate), Sylvester Stallone (he had a small role in “Over the Top”) and many other notable characters.

Several years ago, Keith was bit on the ankle by a brown recluse spider while sleeping and the health problems after this never seemed to go away.

He ballooned up to 400 pounds and had several bouts over the years with complications and swelling on the leg that had been bit. There were several discussions over the years of amputation but I guess Keith wouldn’t allow it.

Keith was quite a prankster and great storyteller who loved to make people laugh. I’ll never forget the story about how he and a group of people including Muhammad Ali got on an elevator and it wouldn’t move.

Keith will be missed and definitely left his mark on the World.

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