Mary E. Kelly November 18, 1926 to March 14, 2019
Our mother, Mary E. Kelly, passed away peacefully on March 14, 2019 at the age of 92 in Reno, Nevada. She was born Mary Joyce Eggink on November 18, 1926, to Mabel Adelaide Dawson and Jan Dirk Eggink of Portland, Oregon, the eldest of four siblings. Family knew her as “Joy.”
Joy was an avid reader, writer, and lover of music. As a teenager she was a journalist for “the Young Oregonians,” and provided music for the local Episcopal church. She graduated from Commerce High School in 1944.
On April 3, 1945 she married Mark W. Kelly (known as Pat), also of Portland Oregon, and they relocated to Cocoa Beach, Florida where he was stationed with the Navy. When the war ended, they returned to Oregon where Pat attended college in Corvallis. Their first child, Mary, was born here. Pat’s career in aeronautical engineering brought the family to Cupertino, California in 1949 where they had two more children: John and Ann. Joy returned to school in 1962, receiving a Masters Degree in Education from San Jose State University in 1965. She was a dedicated teacher at Saratoga Elementary for 16 years.
After their retirement in 1981 Joy and Pat moved to the community of Pine Mountain Lake outside of Groveland, California. Here they built a small house off the runway of the local small aircraft airport. They were able to address their many interests in this community: flying, hiking, and participating in the local chorus. They also involved themselves in volunteer work; Joy served on the school board, worked as a docent at the Groveland museum (which she and Pat helped found), and wrote for and directed melodramas.
Joy was a woman of passion and strength and energy. If there was something she wanted to do, she did it, from baking her own bread as a young mother to becoming a pilot after she retired from teaching. She created beautiful flower gardens. She wrote children’s short stories which were published in “Spider” magazine, and generated at least a thousand poems over her lifetime. She never stopped playing music: viola, piano, organ, guitar, and Irish harp. She had a lovely alto voice, and sang in church choruses, the San Jose Symphony Chorus, and the Pine Cone Singers of Groveland. She led her family in singing folk songs at family gatherings.
Joy is preceded in death by her husband of fifty years, Mark W. Kelly, and her brothers-in-law, Robert L. Kelly, and Franklin D. Kelly, and sister-in-law Joan Eggink.
Joy is survived by her children, Mary (John) Urrutia, John (Nita) Kelly, and Ann (Larry) Wright, five grandchildren, nine great-grandchildren, her sisters Kathi (Keith) Blodgett, Linda Eggink, brother John (JoAnne) Eggink, Jr., and sister-in-law Rose (Dave) Kelly.
The family would like to express profound gratitude to the remarkable individuals who have provided such loving care for our mother: Summit Estates Memory Care staff, Seniors Helping Seniors, and Summit View Hospice. You are all heroes in our regard.
A celebration of life will be scheduled for a later time. The family respectfully requests that donations to the Alzheimer’s Association be made in lieu of flowers.