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Thomas Joseph Kelly


1926 - 2017 Obituary Condolences
Thomas Joseph Kelly Obituary
Thomas Joseph Kelly

AGE: 90 • Beach Haven

It is with heavy hearts that we announce the passing of our beloved father and husband, Tom Kelly, who was called home after a brief but brave battle with cancer, and a long and fruitful life. He lived in Beach Haven, NJ, and Roseland, Florida on the Sebastian River.

Tom Kelly was born in Philadelphia to Dr. Lawrence and Ethel Kelly on September 4, 1926. He was the last surviving brother of "four grand boys," John, Lawrence, and the Honorable James M. Kelly. He was also predeceased by his devoted wife Peggy in 1991, his granddaughter Caitlin Kelly (2006) his son-in-law Marvin Moore (2010), and his daughter in law Joy Kelly (2015).

He is survived by his wife, the former Elizabeth O'Brien, his six children; Thomas Jr. (Colleen), Patrick, Denise Moore, Maureen O'Boyle (Sean), Lisa Madzin (John), and Sean (Judy), along with twelve surviving grand children and one great-granddaughter.

Tom was a WWII Navy veteran, an ensign who served on the USS Des Moines, and a former Merchant Marine who was fiercely proud of his country. His conservative political views were well known to all, and they never wavered.

Tom was an entrepreneur in insurance and real estate. He owned and operated several businesses on Long Beach Island including the Spray Beach Motor Inn, the Bayview Manor, and the Coral Seas Motel. He was past president of the Rotary Club of LBI.

A life long resident of the area who loved to fish and clam, Tom was almost born in West Creek where his parents had a summer home for many years. His mother Ethel loved the shore so much she refused to go back to Philadelphia until the end of summer against the pleas of her husband, Doc. On Labor Day Weekend of 1926, Ethel finally boarded the bus that meandered its way through the Pine Barrens back to Philadelphia where she gave birth shortly after at home to another healthy baby boy, Tom. Dad spent so much of his summer time as a youth floating around in Little Egg Harbor Bay surviving on nothing but clams, as an adult he could no longer stand to eat them raw.

Our father was a self made man. His charm, witticisms, and sage advice will not be forgotten. Donations can be made to Boys Town, 200 Flanagan Blvd., Boys Town, NE 68010. A memorial service will be held at a future date.
Published in Beach Haven Times on July 27, 2017
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