Richard "Dick" G. Kelly, 77, of Manchester, beloved husband of Jeannette (Caselli) Kelly, passed away with his beloved daughter Theresa "Tree" (as her father called her) and his son William Kelly and his partner, Nathalie, by his side at Manchester Memorial Hospital on Sunday, Dec. 22, 2013, after a long and courageous battle with lung cancer.
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Born in Manchester on March 28, 1936, he was the son of the late William and Anna (Binok) Kelly. Richard attended Manchester public schools and was a lifelong resident of Manchester. Richard joined the U.S. Army when he was 17, after begging his mother to sign for him, since he was under age. He began his service during the Korean Conflict from April 10, 1953, until his honorable discharge on March 24, 1956. While in the Army, he was stationed in Italy, Austria, and Germany, and was a member of the Austrian ski patrol.
In 1961, he married Jeannette, and they raised Theresa and William together in Manchester. Dick loved animals. He could be seen passing out nuts and birdseed on his walks every day. At home, he put out corn for the woodchucks, nuts and birdseed for the birds and squirrels, and deer food for the deer and other animals. He did this for over 20 years. Now, his wife and "Tree" carry on the tradition. He had two special dogs, Poochie and Brandy, with whom he spent much of his life. When they passed, he began to take his son's dogs, Katie and Harry, for rides and walks in the woods every day, no matter what the weather was like. He loved all of God's creatures, especially the four-legged ones. His favorite shirt was emblazoned with, "I love dogs, it's humans that annoy me." He was a truck driver and welder for Union Carbide when he retired. He was a member of the Zipzer Club and a gold card member of the Army & Navy Club of Manchester. He will be greatly missed by his beloved family.
In addition to his wife, he leaves his daughters Theresa Kelly and her partner, Patrick Andrews, and Chandra (Kelly) Bliss; his son William Kelly and his partner and former wife, Nathalie; three precious grandchildren, Christina Kelly of Florida and Patrick and Ryan Kelly, both of Manchester. He also is survived by three sisters, Marion Brewer of Colchester, Alice (Albert) Gorman of Manchester, and Donna Kelly of Manchester. He also is survived by his brother William Kelly of Manchester; his brother-in-law Steve Brighenti of Avon; and many nieces and nephews. Dick was predeceased by his sister Arlene (Kelly) Brighenti and many aunts and uncles. Dick also leaves his special friends he met each morning for coffee at Panera's: Al Sholes (who called him every night to talk and check on him, when he could no longer meet for coffee), Jim Monaco, Ernie Johnson, Cliff Duff, Dick Wemmel, Harold Bernstein, Vinney Pugliese, and all the people he met at Panera's. He will also be missed by his friend Al Packer, and childhood friend, Bill Carson.
His family would like to thank all the wonderful people at the DeQuattro Cancer Center, especially Dr. Li, Brian, Melissa, and all the people in the front office and all the angels in the infusion room. Thank you to the Visiting Nurse & Health Services of Connecticut, with a very special "thank you" from the bottom of our hearts to Sarah, with whom he had a special connection.
Holmes Funeral Home, Manchester, has care of the arrangements.
Dick's wishes will be honored by his family, as he did not want calling hours and wanted a private burial.
Because of his love for animals, in lieu of flowers, those wishing to do so may make a donation in Richard Kelly's name to Sadie Mae Foundation Animal Rescue League Inc., P.O. Box 9323, Bolton, CT 06043.
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Published in Journal Inquirer from Dec. 28, 2013 to Jan. 3, 2014