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Contagious passion for involvement

September 28, 2011 - By Joe St. Henry

Review Editor

Sue Kelley's enthusiasm and encouragement that she provided her family, friends, colleagues – even young children – was contagious.  She knew how to rally people together to face any challenge and did it with a sense of humor.

That is how her husband Paul and so many people who knew her in the Lake Orion community will always remember her.  Kelley passed away on Sunday, Sept. 25, 2011, after battling ALS and breast cancer.

"She had this gift – a passion for getting people organized and involved," said her husband.  This ability was shown just this past weekend, with her efforts to form and motivate a local team to participate in an ALS charity walk. The group raised almost $17,000 for the event and donations continue to roll in, he said.

Earlier in life, Kelley worked for EDS, where she met her husband in 1989.  They married in 1992 and moved to Lake Orion in 1993.  She worked as a teacher's aide at Carpenter Elementary School and left an impression with many kindergarten students over the years.

"She was drawn to little kids and just connected with them," Paul said.  "Last night I ran into a guy whose kids had Sue as a teacher a few years ago and they still talk about Mrs. Kelley."

Kelley also embraced her faith and was a founding member of Kensington Community Church in Lake Orion.  She volunteered on the hospitality and set-up committee.  Her sense of humor lived in such endeavors – she wanted to show the church "how to make a good cup of coffee," Paul added.

Despite her hectic schedule, Kelley always found time for her family, including daughter Megan, 17, and Brendan, 14.   Paul said she was especially proud of Megan receiving her varsity letters for basketball and lacrosse and thoroughly enjoyed watching Brendan play hockey and run track.

"Sue was the glue that held our family so tightly together and made us all better people," Paul said. "She was just a blessing for me, the kids and everybody she knew."

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