Edward F. Kelly

  • Born: November 21, 1940
  • Died: January 23, 2017
  • Location: Melrose, Massachusetts

Robinson Funeral Home

809 Main Street
Melrose, MA 02176

Tel. (781) 665-1900

Tribute & Message From The Family

42-Year Melrose Firefighter

Message From The Family

Thank you for your support during this difficult time. Please enhance this tribute to Ed by adding your memories and photos.

Mr. Edward F. Kelly, a longtime resident of Melrose, passed away peacefully at home on Monday, January 23, 2017, at age 76.

Edward was born in Melrose on November 21, 1940. He was raised in Melrose, graduated from Melrose High School, and proudly entered the service in February of 1958. Ed was an Airman in the United States Navy during the initial stages of the Vietnam War. He also served aboard the USS Lake Champlain, antisubmarine carrier (CVS-9) and was part of the recovery team to pick up Alan Shepard from the first manned space flight in 1961. Ed's time in the Navy was the beginning of a life dedicated to public service, for his country, his community, and fellow citizens.

Ed served the people of Melrose as a Firefighter for 42 years, dedicating himself to the safety of others through his day to day work, as well as a nationally certified EMT. He was appointed as the Emergency Management Director for Melrose, a role he held for over a decade. Ed was instrumental in developing an improved emergency response system for Melrose and beyond. His concern was for the health and well-being of other citizens, and worked to improve the level of public safety for all. He also led the Auxiliary Police in Melrose for several years, served as a community liaison to Hallmark Health Emergency Management Committee, and worked on behalf of the Mystic Region Local Emergency Planning Committee.

Ed's passion for improving public safety led him to become a local voice in Melrose government and state level initiatives. He was one of the first in the State of Massachusetts to be certified as an Emergency Management Director, and received a commendation recognizing his work in drafting guidelines for state EMD requirements. Ed was also a key member of the Homeland Security's Northeast Regional Advisory Council, having served for 11 years and helping to establish vital systems to improve interoperability for emergency response teams.

Always supportive of Melrose and involved with local projects, Ed was a founding member of the Melrose Art Festival, and chaired the Melrose Centennial Committee. He also was an assistant professor at North Shore Community College.

Young at heart, Ed was a fun-loving father who enjoyed coaching little league baseball, drove the bus for Malden Drum Corps, and kept everyone guessing with his sense of humor. When not working in the community, Ed enjoyed time spent on Cape Cod, kayaking, fishing, biking, or just relaxing at the beach, regardless of the weather. He was proud of his Irish heritage, loved a Celtic tune, and was forever loyal to his family. He was a great father, doting uncle, and most of all, cherished his time spent at home with the love of his life, Lillian. Throughout his life, Ed Kelly made a lasting impression on everyone he met, and the impact he had on his family, friends, and the community will continue on as his legacy. He will missed, but always lovingly remembered.

Ed was the beloved husband of Lillian Yadgood Kelly with whom he shared 29 years of marriage. Loving father of Pamela Kelly Dobay and her husband John of Lynn, Edward F. Kelly, Jr. and his wife Lora of Ledyard, CT, Timothy Kelly and his wife Pamela of Malden, Bonnie Kelly of Melrose, Susan Kelly of Jacksonville, FL, Jessica M. Kelly of CT, Bryan E. Kelly of Somerville, and Gabriel Roman Kelly of Ashland. Dear brother of Paul J. Kelly and his wife Dottie of Atkinson, NH, and brother-in-law of Alvin Yadgood and his wife Maureen of N. Andover. Devoted son of the late Edward L. and Barbara Kelly, and dear son-in-law of Eva and the late Peter Yadgood. Also survived by 11 grandchildren, 4 great-grandchildren, and many nieces and nephews.

Relatives & friends will gather in honor of Ed's life during visiting hours at the Robinson Funeral Home, 809 Main St., Melrose on Thursday, Jan. 26 from 4-8pm and again on Friday morning at 9am before leaving in procession to St. Mary's Church, Herbert St., Melrose for his Funeral Mass celebrated at 10am. Interment with US Navy honors at Wyoming Cemetery, Melrose. Gifts in honor of Ed may be made to the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, 9 Erie Dr., Ste. 101, Natick, MA 01760.


Condolence & Memory Journal

glad to send the picture. RIP Eddie

Posted by Karen M Mutch - North Andover, MA - Friend   February 02, 2017

Dear Lillian, John and I are thinking of you and offering prayers that you will be given the strength to cope with your loss. Your courage in dealing with your never ending challenges has been amazing this year. May all your good memories with Ed bring you some sort of solace. Love Linda

Posted by Linda McNamara - Ireland - Friend   January 28, 2017

I wish you peace and comfort through this difficult time. God Bless.

Posted by Anna Ricardo - Melrose, MA   January 27, 2017

Wishing you peace to bring comfort, courage to face the days ahead and loving memories to forever hold in your hearts.

Posted by David & Wendy Butts - Melrose, MA - Friend   January 27, 2017

Dear Lillian and family. I was so saddened to hear the news of cousin Ed. Although we've lived apart and didn't stay in touch as we could have, I have thought of my Melrose family often. The write up was wonderful. He truly has left his mark and a legacy of a life well lived. My thoughts and prayers to all. Love, Donna Brown from Mississippi.

Posted by Donna Brown - Ocean Springs, MS - Family   January 26, 2017

Hi Lillian my condolences to you and your family. JD

Posted by Jemima Sanon - Waltham, MA - Coworker   January 26, 2017

Dear Lillian
My condolences to you and family
Connie Marques

Posted by Connies Marques - Cambridge, MA - Coworker   January 26, 2017

Ed's smile spread joy in any room he entered. It was a pleasure to work with him in so many Melrose events. Lillian, my prayers are with you.

Posted by George S Hickey - Melrose, MA - Friend   January 26, 2017

Pam, Kiara and your entire family,

Sorry for your loss. You all are in our thoughts and prayers.

Posted by Rayanne & Ernie Fregeau - Cumberland, RI   January 26, 2017

Wishing you strength for today and comfort in the days ahead, knowing how much your husband meant to so many.Although it's difficult today to see beyond the sorrow, may looking back in memory help comfort you tomorrow.

Sandra Nuñez

Posted by Sandra Nunez - Lynn, MA - Coworker   January 26, 2017

Lillian, My sincere sympathies to you and your family. You've been an amazing power of strength.
May wonderful memories comfort you now and in the days ahead.

Posted by Charlene Medeiros - Winthrop, MA - Coworker   January 25, 2017

Lillian, I am sorry for you and your family's loss. Our deepest sympathy and prayers are with you during this difficult time. God gained another angel. God Bless you.

Posted by Phaedra McLaurin - Fitchburg, MA - Coworker   January 25, 2017


Dear Kelly Family, please accept my deepest condolences on the passing of your Father, you all will be in our thoughts and prayers during this difficult time. Your Dad was a great guy, always taking care of and watching out for the Drum Corp kids, myself included! Sincerely, Tom & Julie Buckley

Posted by Thomas Buckley - Saugus, MA - Family Friend   January 25, 2017

I am so sorry for your loss, which is a loss to all of Melrose. I so enjoyed knowing and working with Ed for the past 20 years - he was a true character who I miss already!

Posted by Ruth Clay - Melrose, MA - Coworker   January 24, 2017

Dear Lillian
Gen and I were saddened to hear of Ed's death. You and your family will be in our thoughts and prayers during this difficult time.
Gen and Frank McNamara

Posted by Francis McNamara - Rockport, MA - Friend   January 24, 2017

Lillian, I'm sorry to hear of Ed's passing, our deepest sympathy to you and your family.

Laura and Jim Boyden

Posted by Laura Boyden - Melrose, MA   January 24, 2017

Rest in peace. God bless your family during this very sad time

Posted by Joanne Bowen - Melrose, MA - Acquaintance   January 24, 2017

To Ed Jr. & all your family, I'm very sorry for the loss of your Dad. My prayers are with you. Judy Cook

Posted by Judy Cook - Saugus, MA - Family Friend   January 24, 2017


To the entire Kelly Family - please accept our deepest sympathy on the loss of Ed. Jim and I meet him when our daughter marched with the Diplomats. Ed was such a kind and friendly person and it was our pleasure to have know him. He will be forever in our hearts Mary and Jim O'Reilly

Posted by A friend   January 24, 2017

I will always remember him as fun loving person my thoughts and prayers are with you all Joan Shepherd- Henderson

Posted by Joan Henderson - Port Charlotte, FL - Friend   January 23, 2017

Lillian, I'm so sorry to learn of Ed's passing. It appears, from following on FB, that his last days and weeks were encompassed by your strength and your love. Truly lovely. I know he'll be missed. Please know that at this time, I will keep you in my prayers. Comfort and strength to you.

Posted by Patty Miller - Plymouth, MA - Friend   January 23, 2017


It's never the right time
To say goodbye.
I will miss you, Dad,
And here is why.
You taught me so much:
To show no fear,
To always have fun,
And face the day with cheer.

You were always so able,
So fast and so strong.
In your little girl's eyes
You could do no wrong.
You would always listen,
And you never pried.
You were the arms around me
When I cried.

You never looked for praises,
And you were never one to boast.
You were always there
For those you loved the most.

You worked so hard,
And those strong working hands
Led me through life
And helped me understand
That life can be hard,
And tough, and sad,
But through it all
I had my Dad.

And because of you,
I understood
That life was actually
Pretty good.
I believe in you
And will follow your path,
And when things go wrong,
I'll look back and laugh.

I hope you can hear me
So I can let you know
That you were and will forever
Be my superhero.
So yes, today
I am full of sorrow,
But I will smile a little more
With each tomorrow.

So please, Dad, go
Be at rest
and know to me
you will always be the BEST

I love you so much and will miss you every day. Forever in my heart.

Posted by Pamela Kelly-Dobay - Lynn, MA - Daughter   January 23, 2017

Family Album

Family Album

Family Album

Family Album

Family Album

Family Album

Family Album

Family Album

Family Album

Family Album

Family Album

Family Album

Family Album

Family Album

Family Album

Family Album

Family Album

Family Album