Thelma Kelley
October 24, 2000 11:00 pm

Thelma Kelley, 74, Brookings, died Oct. 14, 2000, in Crescent City, after a short illness.

She was born June 15, 1926, at the Presidio in San Francisco, to Leon and Helen Van Sickle. She graduated from high school in 1944 in Priest River, Idaho. She then attended San Francisco State College where she graduated in 1950 with a degree in education.

She then began a 30-year career as an educator.

She taught elementary and junior high students in various school districts throughout the Pacific Northwest for 30 years. The last 17 years of her teaching career were spent in the Illinois Valley at Kerby Elementary School, Evergreen Elementary School and Lorna Byrne Middle School.

She met Bill Kelley, her husband of 47 years, when they were freshmen at Priest River High School in 1940. They were married in Couer dAlene, Idaho, on Dec. 27, 1952.

She enjoyed traveling with her husband throughout the western United States, Canada and Mexico. She was an avid gardener and enjoyed having wildlife of all kinds in her yard. She especially enjoyed birdwatching.

Mrs. Kelley spent many hours fishing on the Chetco River for steelhead. She also enjoyed fishing in the ocean for salmon and tuna with her husband.

She was a member of the Order of Eastern Star, Western Star Chapter 64, Kerby, and a member of Rebekah Lodge 342 in Rodeo, Calif.

Survivors are her husband; daughter Christie Gestvang, Gilchrist; son Keith Kelley, Seattle.

Also surviving are her granddaughters, Patricia Silva and Kirsten Gestvang.

Preceding her in death was her son Kenneth Kelley.

Burial was at sea on Oct. 19 from the fishing vessel Charabi.

Remembrances may be made to South Coast Humane Society, 620 Hemlock St., Brookings, OR 97415 or to Shriners Hospitals for Children, 3101 S.W. Sam Jackson Park Road, Portland, OR 97201.