Colonel U.S. Army retired Donald Paul Kelly Jr., of Glencoe, formerly of Grand Rapids, Mich., passed away on Friday, May 3, 2013, at Gadsden Regional Hospital.
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He was a graduate of the University of Michigan and earned a Master of Administrative Science degree from the University of Alabama, Huntsville. As a veteran of the Korean and Vietnam conflicts, he received many distinguished awards, including the Legion of Merit with two Oak Leaf Clusters and the Bronze Star. Colonel Kelly commanded an artillery battery in Korea and was Commanding Officer of the 5th Maintenance Battalion (DS) in Vietnam.
Upon his retirement after 30 years of service, he was employed by and retired from the Iowa-Illinois Gas and Electric Company, Davenport, Iowa, where he was the Supervisor of Safety and Training. After this second retirement, he returned to his wife's home town of Gadsden, settling in Glencoe. He was a sport shooting enthusiast, a Master Gardener and an avid reader. He was a member of St. James Catholic Church.
Colonel Kelly was preceded in death by his parents, Donald Paul Kelly Sr. and Luellamae Kelly; and his brother, Gary Marne Kelly, all of Grand Rapids, Mich.
Survivors include his wife, Marguerite (Piazza); son, Donald Paul Kelly III (Lynn); grandson, Evan; granddaughter, Erin; son, Christopher Vincent (Elisabeth); grandson, Alexander; son, Robert Michael (Althea); granddaughter, Alyssa; daughter, Mary Ellen Kelly Lanning (Dave); granddaughter Katelyn; grandson Michael; son, John Matthew (Donyale); and many nieces, nephews and other relatives. His children and grandchildren were his greatest joy in life.
Special thanks to the members of the 5th Maintenance Battalion (DS). In recent years, Colonel Kelly thoroughly enjoyed attending their annual reunions.
Visitation will be from 6 to 8 p.m. Thursday, May 9 at Collier-Butler Funeral Home. Viewing will be at 10 a.m. May 10 at St. James Catholic Church, followed by the funeral Mass at 11 a.m.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to St. James Catholic School, 700 Albert Rains Blvd., Gadsden, AL 35901.
Published in The Gadsden Times from May 5 to May 8, 2013