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Joan Adeline Whitty Kelley

Joan Adeline Whitty Kelley

Joan Kelley passed away on April 29, 2022 at Chandler Memorial Hospital after a short illness. Joan was born on June 21, 1926 in Eagle Grove, IA to Thomas and Margaret Whitty. She grew up in Clarion, IA where she graduated from High School.

After high school Joan was recruited to work at the Veterans Administration in Des Moines. She worked in Des Moines and California before moving to Denver where she worked at Lowry AFB.  She then moved to Colorado Springs and became the Personal Secretary to Brigadier General Robert Francis McDermott at the Air Force Academy. It was during this time that Joan met Bernard Kelley, also originally from Iowa.  They were married on November 19, 1960.  It was a match for the ages.  They made Denver their home for over 20 years.  After marriage Joan traveled with her husband and both were manufacturer’s representatives for home furnishings from both Denver and San Francisco where they moved in 1982.

In 1998, Joan and Kelley (as Bernard was known) left San Francisco and moved to Sun Lakes, Arizona to enjoy the weather and play golf!  They formed many friends through their golfing activities and gatherings were frequent and fun, just like Joan and Kelley. They were also very active in St. Steven’s Catholic Church serving in many capacities for a number of years.

Joan was preceded in death by her parents, her brothers Donald T. and Thomas E., her sister, Sister Marilyn of the Sisters of Mercy, and her husband Bernard.

Joan is survived by her sister Margaret Louise Whitty Ehmke and many nieces, nephews and grand-nieces and nephews!

In lieu of flowers donations may be made to St. Vincent de Paul, c/o St. Steven’s Catholic Church, 24827 S. Dobson Rd, Sun Lakes, AZ 85248.

1 Comment

  • Joe Follett Posted May 6, 2022 8:02 PM

    I am the son of Bernie and Darrell Follett. I have many fond memories of Uncle Bun and Aunt Joan. They were the jet setters of the family, living in big cities, traveling the country, spending time in Hawaii, going to cool places, country club members. They came back to Iowa once a year for a few weeks, they split their time between Creston and Clarian Iowa, they were fun to be around, and they loved being back in Iowa and seeing everyone. Follett’s, Wimmer’s and the Kelley’s were a close group. The adults of the greatest generation (our folks) enjoyed each other’s company, just say around and talked laughed reminisced, and drank cocktails. Joan was the last of that generation, we miss them all and we will have done well if our children think of us in this way. It’s with a sad heart that I read her obituary and save it in my historic files with all the rest of the obituaries.
    Joe Follett Waukee, IA, son of Bernie and Darrell Follett

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