Genevieve “Ginny” Theresa Kelly, was called home to heaven in peace on Thursday, December 31, 2020.
Ginny was born July 8, 1931 in New York City to Jack and Josephine Burston Payne. An only child, she attended twelve years of Catholic schools, graduating from All Saints High School in 1949. During her senior year of high school, she met her future husband, James “Jim” Timothy Kelly, a veteran, now age 91, who survives her. Ginny and Jim married in Saint Barbara’s Catholic Church in Brooklyn NY on Nov. 24, 1951. Jim was then in the U.S. Army, stationed on Camp Atterbury, Indiana. He returned to New York on leave to marry his “war bride.” Post war, the couple settled in their first home in Indianapolis, Indiana, where their five children were born.
In her first workplace, the U.S. Army, Ginny quickly rose to become executive secretary to the Adjutant General, and was cleared for "top secret" matters. She later held the position of executive secretary in a steel mill in Speedway, Indiana, and later, after relocating back to New York, with a buff manufacture in Brooklyn NY and then with Kitchen Designs by Ken Kelly, in Williston Park, NY. In this later position, Ginny worked for her son Ken Kelly in the kitchen and bath renovation business, which was Ginny’s favorite job! After retirement, Ginny and Jim moved to Punta Gorda FL where they spent many happy hours boating on their boat named TruLuv. They returned to the New York area in 2014 to be near children and grandchildren. Her most recent residence was in East Norwich NY.
Ginny gave many hours to charitable works in the Catholic churches in New York, Indiana and Florida. She volunteered for a class of new doctors at Saint Vincent’s Catholic teaching hospital. Ginny was a talented artist and enjoyed painting and created many keepsake painted Christmas ornaments for her children and grandchildren. She also enjoyed swimming and boating and she and Jim enjoyed the beauty and challenge of navigating the TruLuv 2,000 miles each way from Long Island to Punta Gorda and back. Ginny was a role model and teacher for her five children and enjoyed their activities and celebrations to the fullest. She enjoyed making family holidays special and was known for her extensive Christmas Eve menu and for Christmas cookie baking, both traditions that have endured in the Kelly family. She enjoyed babysitting for her grandchildren and was able to enjoy the marriage celebrations of the eldest three grandchildren.
Ginny is survived by her five children and their children: Barbara Kelly Vessa and John Vessa, and their children Gabrielle, James and Jack; Kenneth and Grace Kelly, and their children Monique, Kristie and Shawn; Geralyn and Tom Shea, and their children Katelin, Erin, Allison and Thomas; and twin sons, James Kelly and his children Jessica, Amanda and James; and John Kelly. She also leaves three great grandchildren and dozens of cousins.
A private funeral mass will take place at St. Mary’s Manhasset NY at a future date with a celebration of life and Christian burial at St. John Cemetery in Middle Village NY to occur at a later date. The family would like to extent their thanks to the kind, compassionate and dedicated doctors and health care providers at St. Francis Hospital and the Tuttle Center at The Amsterdam in Port Washington NY. In lieu of flowers, the family has requested that donations in Ginny’s name be made to St. Francis Hospital in Roslyn NY at https://1150.thankyou4caring.org. Messages can be left for the family at Kelly Family, 72 Virginia Drive, Manhasset NY 11030.
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