Obituary, Eunice Kelly

Mon, 02/17/2014 - 3:00pm

Eunice Kelly, adored wife of Francis “Bud” Kelly, died surrounded by family on Sunday, Feb. 1, 2014. Born Eunice Mary McGinn to the late Charles Timothy McGinn and Eunice (Granger) McGinn in Milford, Mass., on Feb. 23, 1931, she had grown up in Windsor Locks, Conn.

She often described her life as compartmentalized. In the compartment of education, Eunice graduated Summa Cum Laude from St. Joseph College and earned her master’s degree at Wesleyan University. A lifelong consummate reader, she never stopped taking courses nor met a course she didn’t love.

In the compartment of careers, the early years were in the field of training. Eunice was a training director at the legendary G. Fox and Co., and later training director at Carson Pirie Scott in Chicago. From the 1960s on her field was marketing, which included Director of Communications for St. Joseph College and a two-decade attachment to Westledge Associates, where she retired as senior Vice President of Marketing.

For over 40 years Eunice wrote a weekly column, “View from my Window,” which first ran in The Farmington Valley Herald in 1968. A humor/general commentary column, it garnered a host of local fans and regardless of what level of executive success she rose to, nothing was as gratifying to her as the bond she formed between her and readers. The adventures of her entire family, from grammar school days on, were chronicled in it. When grandchildren came along, readers were introduced to them as Kate the Great, Princess Whitney, Cool Dude Jay and Brenna the Beautiful.

In the compartment of culture, all the arts interested her, but theater and film were life-long loves. She often reminisced of halcyon days (from 1949-1954) when she was the ingenue at the Somers Stock Theater in Somers, Conn. Civic commitments were many. St. Joseph University and the friends of the Simsbury Public Library remained her favorites. Eunice was currently serving as a director on the Board and had been President of Friends during the expansion.

All compartments mattered to her, but overall there was just one compartment that soared above the rest in the province of her heart — that of family. Eunice always described herself as the luckiest of woman, married to a man who was her husband, her lover, the father of her children and her best friend. Mother of three sons, all of whom she adored, mother-in-law to three wives she thought of as her daughters, and grandmother to four who danced on the moon.

A family matriarch of wild Irish wit, tempered by a warm and compassionate heart, Eunice leaves behind her beloved husband Francis J. “Bud” Kelly Jr.; her son, Francis Joseph “Kel” Kelly, III, his wife Heather of Weston, Mass., and their children, Whitney Kelly of Boston, and Francis Joseph “Jay” Kelly, IV of Washington, D.C. and his fiancée, Laura Dean of Washington, D.C.; her son, Timothy Charles “Tim” Kelly, his wife Susie of Corvallis, Oregon, and their daughter, Katherine Virginia “Katie” Kelly of San Francisco, Calif.; her son, Christopher Matthew “Chris” Kelly, his wife Sharon and their daughter Brenna Marie Kelly, all of Simsbury, Conn. She is also survived by her brother, Bill and Lois McGinn of Boca Raton, FL and numerous nieces and nephews and an inner circle of treasured friends who at every stage enriched her life.

As the Irish believe, if love of family and friends could have saved her, she would be with us yet. Burial was held in Simsbury Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to: Eunice Kelly Memorial Library and Education Fund, 10 East Tomstead Road, Simsbury, Conn., 06070. Please visit Mrs. Kelly’s “Book of Memories” at for online condolences.