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Eugene Kelly



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Eugene "Gene" F. Kelly, 90, of Tampa, Fla., died on November 27. He was born and raised in Jersey City, N.J., and was a son of Elizabeth V. and Dr James E. Kelly.

His son and daughter-in-law, Dr Paul F. and Karen Kelly of Newtown; his daughter, Alison J. Kelly of Tampa; and his daughter and son-in-law, Kathleen and Jeffrey Willard of Landenberg, Penn., survive him. Also surviving him are his grandchildren, Adam, Ian, Connor, Matthew, Brendan, and Meagan Kelly, and Tracy and Jeffrey Willard; and his sister, Janet Hughes and husband, Jim, of Long Branch, N.J. His beloved wife, Joan (O'Brien) Kelly, predeceased him in 1990. He was also predeceased by a son, Mark O'Brien Kelly, in 1994; a daughter, Adrienne, in infancy; a granddaughter, Ashley Kelly, in 2008; and by his siblings, James E. Kelly and Elizabeth Kelly Bishop.

He raised his family in Mountainside, N.J., and Darien, before moving to Tampa 32 years ago with his wife.

Mr Kelly left school and went to work as a young teenager to support his mother after the death of his father. He worked at Bond Bread packing bread crumbs and was known to say, "It was a crummy job, but I made a lot of dough."

Through perseverance, he completed high school and went on to graduate from Seton Hall University, and obtain his CPA, all while working during the day and attending classes at night. He also taught accounting at Seton Hall for ten years.

He had a successful career as a financial executive, starting with Boyce, Hughes & Farrell then onto PriceWaterhouse, and ultimately moving onto Rheingold Corp, which was subsequently acquired by PepsiCo. He rose to the level of executive vice president of PepsiCo International traveling worldwide.

He was an Army Veteran of the Korean War, stationed in San Francisco, and a member of the AICPA. While in Mountainside, he served as president of the school board at Our Lady of Lourdes School, which his children attended.

Mr Kelly was a devoted husband, father, and grandfather, known for maintaining a positive outlook and zest for life, notwithstanding the hardships and losses he faced.

He enjoyed playing his organ and ukulele and entertaining family and friends as the "magic man." He enthusiastically embraced modern technology by connecting with friends and family via his IPad.

Visitation will take place at O'Brien Funeral Home, 2028 Highway 35, Wall, on Friday, December 2, from 3 to 7 pm.

A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at St Catharine Church, 215 Essex Avenue, Spring Lake, N.J.,  on Saturday, December 3, at 10:30 am, followed by a burial at St Catharine Cemetery, 1100 West Chicago Boulevard, Sea Girt, N.J.

In lieu of flowers, donations in Mr Kelly's memory may be made to Friends of the County Parks and Recreation, Inc PO Box 271911, Tampa FL 33688 (please specify Pam Callahan Nature Preserve in Gene Kelly's name).

For further information, directions, or to send online condolences, visit obrienfuneralhome.com.

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