Patrick M. Kelly
Loving husband, brother, and uncle, Patrick M Kelly, passed away early in the morning on 14 Aug 22 at the age of 72.
Pat was born on 28 Apr 1950 in Salt Lake City, UT to legendary League of Women Voters activist, Mary Jean Kelly, and heroic World War II pilot, Robert Earl Kelly. As a child, Pat grew up in Rose Park and Bountiful, UT as a fun-loving trouble-making terrorizing rabble-rouser who was fascinated by fire, explosives, fireworks, and guns and tested the patience of his parents, neighbors, and St Olaf’s Catholic School teachers.
While growing up in Bountiful, Pat grew like a tree and blossomed into a spectacular basketball player at St Olaf’s and Judge Memorial High School. Pat loved basketball and graduated from Judge in 1968 with all-state honors in basketball. Pat subsequently attended Wake Forrest University in Winston Salem, NC, served as team captain his senior year, and graduated in 1973 with a history degree.
After graduating from college, Pat received the opportunity to play professional basketball in France, where he spent the next six years in Grenoble, Dunkirk, Champagne, and Fort Philippe. Pat really found himself in France. He had lots of down time in there, so Pat read a lot, picked up cooking, and ultimately became a spectacular chef.
Upon his return from France in 1980, Pat became interested in physical therapy, attended PT school at the University of Utah, and became an adored physical therapist. Pat was loved and respected everywhere he worked because he had a passion for PT and healing people. Pat was a kind-hearted and dependable physical therapist who was so good with people, even as a rookie PT. It only took a short time for Pat’s patients to fall in love with the Gentle Giant and his healing hands.
While he was attending PT school, Pat met the love of his life, Roberta (Bo) Thorn, through a mutual friend and fellow PT school student in 1980. Bo enjoyed how honest and direct Pat was, so the two started dating shortly after. Bo was powerless against Pat’s charm and terrible jokes and the two soon fell in love and were married on 16 April 1983. Bo loved being together with Pat, whether it was going camping, eating dinner together at home, spending time together reading, or dancing out on the back porch.
Pat loved French cooking and spoke eloquently about the difference in cooking with clarified butter vs regular butter. Pat continually improved his cooking and watched the PBS cooking show on Saturday mornings to try out the recipes from the show. Dinner at Pat and Bo’s house was always a fabulous event. His Country Captain Chicken, Morel mushroom salad, walleye fish fries, and duck dinners at the house were always cherished gatherings.
Pat was an amazing and soft-spoken teddy bear who was patient and kind to everyone. He never raised his voice and always let his actions speak for him. He loved little kids and teaching them about birds and the outdoors and showing them how to shoot trap. Pat was also a father-like figure to several whose fathers had passed.
Pat enjoyed wildlife and the simplicity of nature. He loved camping, fishing, hunting, and spending time with family and friends in Montana at Hebgen Lake and Georgetown Lake; in Wyoming in the Wind River Mountains, Dad’s Lake, Greys River, Lewis Lake, Shoshone Lake, and Flaming Gorge; at Blue Lake, NV; and in Utah at Strawberry Reservoir, on a houseboat at Lake Powell, and in the Uinta Mountains.
Pat’s love of nature and birds led him to the Ambassador Duck Club, a migratory marshland just southeast of Antelope Island in the Great Salt Lake. Pat purchased his membership to the Duck Club right after he graduated from Wake Forrest and was at the Duck Club probably 150 days a year running his dogs. Pat was there almost daily during duck season from October to February and 3-4 times a week in the summer, including every weekend working on whatever needed to be done.
In addition to the Duck Club, Pat was incredibly passionate about the Bear River, the National Wild Turkey Federation, the Friends of the Great Salt Lake, and National Audubon Society.
Pat is survived by his wife, Bo; sister, Joan Lepley; brothers, Steve and Mike Kelly; sisters-in-law, Sharon Kelly, Cathy Kelly, Lynn Wise, and Martha Mason; brothers-in-law, Jack Thorn and Roger Hawk; nieces, Jean Kelly, Kate Lepley, and Elizabeth Kinghorn; nephews, (Little) Patrick, Paul, Mike, and (Little) Tim Kelly; and nephew-in-law, Clayton Kienholtz.
Pat was preceded to Heaven by parents, Jean and Bob; brother, (Big) Tim Kelly; sisters-in-law, Virginia Tarpley and Antonella Kelly; brothers-in-law, Rick Lepley and Mike Hawk; his first dog and German short hair, Twiggy; and beloved labs, Abe, Bess, Kitty, Corvis, and Bette.
To read Pat’s full obituary or if you have photos of or a story about Pat you’d like to share, please call or email nephew, (Little) Patrick Kelly, at 801-915-8043 or firstname.lastname@example.org.