BETTY B. KELLY


KELLY BETTY BROWN KELLY Of McLean, VA passed away peacefully on February 17, 2013 due to complications of a stroke. She was surrounded by her loving children and grandchildren. The eldest of three children, Betty was born October 23, 1919, in the Panama Canal Zone to Army Captain Robert Washington Brown and Georgia Ray Hamilton Brown, both of Little Rock, Arkansas. Preceded in death by her beloved husband of 52 years, Navy Captain John Curtis Kelly and her daughter, Kathleen Kelly Hall, she is survived by brother, Ray and Peggy Brown of New Orleans, LA; children, Michael and Peggy Kelly of Chestertown, MD, Robert and Marie Kelly of Norfolk, VA, Jerry and Ellen Kelly of Oak Hill, VA, Thomas and Jude Kelly of Virginia Beach, VA and Letitia and Malcolm Butler of McLean, VA. She is also survived by nieces, Georgia Ray Brown and Virginia Brown Lorber; nephews, Ray W. Brown, Jr. and Robert B. Brown; as well 14 grandchildren and 16 great-grandchildren. She cherished each and every member of her large, loving family. Early in life, Betty was a fashion model at Woodie's and Garfinckle's and studied fashion art at Stuart Art School in Washington, DC, but she earned her spurs as a military daughter and wife. She shepherded her six children through many moves across the continental US and Hawaii as their father served at sea with air squadron, wing and ship commands. She was a mother first, but also actively volunteered in community services such as the Norfolk , child immunization, and caring for elderly shut-ins. Betty tirelessly tended her beloved Curt through eight years of Alzheimer's until his death in 1991 and lost her darling daughter Kathy to it in 2007. Her beacon through much of life was the search for spiritual truth, learning first from her Methodist Mason father, then pursuing a deep exploration of Eastern philosophy, and finally coming full cycle to embrace her husband Curt's Catholic religion. She defied stereotypes as she hewed courageously to her ethical, spiritual and political convictions, rendering her a fiercely faithful wife and mother, an austere vegan, and a fiery Constitutional conservative in politics. Her greatest conviction, however, was love. A funeral service will be held at St Luke's Roman Catholic Church, McLean, Virginia at 11 a.m. on Friday, March 1. Interment at Arlington National Cemetery will occur separately. In lieu of flowers, please consider donating to the national or your local .A funeral service will be held at St Luke's Roman Catholic Church, McLean, Virginia at 11 a.m. on Friday, March 1. Interment at Arlington National Cemetery will occur separately. In lieu of flowers, please consider donating to the national or your local .


Published in The Washington Post on Feb. 26, 2013