Family and friends are remembering John E. Kelly and sharing this with his community:
John Edward Kelly
John E. Kelly set sail peacefully on a Heaven-bound adventure February 20, 2021, age 99. He was born June 7, 1921 to John and Eileen Kelly in their West Seattle home.
Growing up, he enjoyed many hours on the beaches and waters of Puget Sound. He joined the Sea Scouts as a youth, expanding his skills in sailing and vessel operations.
He graduated from West Seattle High School in 1939, then trained in boat building. He joined the Army in 1943, serving aboard the Hains, an Army Corps of Engineers ship, in the Pacific Theater. His early maritime experience served him well.
After WW II, he married Elizabeth Hamilton, with whom he raised four children and built their first house. He studied at the University of Washington and moved into professional life as a naval architect/marine engineer, retiring after 33 years at MARCO Seattle Shipyard. After Elizabeth’s death he married Jackie Carey, who joined him in a busy retirement, traveling and staying involved with family and many community interests.
Those interests included active membership in the Puget Sound Maritime Historical Society, Southwest Seattle Historical Society, West Seattle Lions Club, local museums, and Sea Scouts, where he volunteered with the SSS Yankee Clipper and area scouting for more than 80 years. His passion for history also included family genealogy, and in his last years, he enjoyed organizing material on the Kenney Home where he lived.
He was a member of West Side Presbyterian Church for 75 years and lived out his Christian faith through thousands of small choices that added up to a life highly respected by family and friends. His children lovingly remember him as a moral, giving, and gentle man who they never heard say a harsh word or speak ill of anyone.
He is survived by his children Gaile Walsh (Jim), Bob, and Tim (Janis); grandchildren Candace, Tara, Sean, Ryan, Stephen, and Victoria; two great-grandchildren; his brother David (Jeanne); 11 nieces and nephews; and extended family. He was preceded in death by wife Elizabeth, son Bill, and wife Jackie.
Memorial donations are suggested to The Kenney Foundation Resident Care Fund or any of the organizations he enjoyed so much.
Share memories of John with his family on the Tribute Page at www.emmickfunerals.com/obituary/John-Kelly.
Arrangements Entrusted to Emmick Family Funeral Home of West Seattle
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