In Memoriam

Sister Ann Kelly, OP (Neal Joseph)

Sister Ann Kelly(1933-2022)

Sister Ann’s modesty would not want me to spend much time praising her virtues. All I think she would want is to be remembered as a good teacher who had a positive influence on young children. She seemed to have a special way with kids and her eyes would always light up when relating some classroom experience. I think this world needs more Sister Anns. Her compassion, understanding, generosity and love have benefitted us all.

This passage from Ray Jacobsen’s remembrance of his cousin, Sister Ann Kelly, was typical of the way other family and friends remembered her after her death: kind, compassionate, caring, and loving others unconditionally.

These virtues grew within Sister Ann even in the face of a painful childhood. Anna Mae Kelly was born in Chicago on February 11, 1933, to John and Anne (Galvin) Kelly. When she was just five days old her mother died of uremic poisoning contracted in childbirth. It seems from Sister’s Ann’s records that her life was in question as well, for she was baptized the day of her birth by a registered nurse at the hospital. Then, when she was four years old, her father was hit by a car and killed as he crossed the street on his way to work in the Chicago stockyards.

Read more about Sister Ann (PDF)

make a memorial giftMemorial gifts may be made to Adrian Dominican Sisters, 1257 East Siena Heights Drive, Adrian, Michigan, 49221. 



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Avatar  Matthew Howe last yearReply

My wife Jennifer and myself lived across from her in the Oak Lawn Apartments. She was such a lovely woman. We were only there for little over a year but visited her a few times after we moved. Let her memory be a blessing.

Avatar  Laveta Iverson 2 years agoReply

she was my best friend's (theresa kelly hewerdine) aunt, so i always called her anna mae. i new her for 35 years. she was a wonderful lady. she will be truly missed.

Avatar  Tim Sharp 2 years agoReply

Sr. Ann was my Godmother and was present at my baptism. She often would reminisce about her tough childhood and overcoming many struggles throughout her life as a servant to Christ. Yet, she was the epitome of the meaning of love. She defined the Scriptures in 1 Corinthians 13. She was a role model for my faith walk and always prayed for me. She was so happy when we all got together as a family; she was always smiling and asking how everyone was doing. Sr. Ann was always positive, supportive and caring to everyone she met. In fact, she would often stop what she was doing or when she was walking to greet someone. She was faithful and dedicated throughout her teaching career and would talk about her experiences in the ER, often being the only one present to pray for those who were shot or stabbed on the Chicago streets. She will be greatly missed, though I look forward to seeing her again among the great cloud of witnesses.

Avatar  Mary Robinson McCleer 2 years agoReply

May the angels welcome Sister Neal Joseph to paradise. My sister Michelle had Sister for the first grade at Queen of the Miraculous Medal School in Jackson, Michigan in the school year of 1964 to 1965. I believe that was Sister's first year at Queen's. We remember that she always had the windows cracked open in any kind of weather for fresh air. She still had the same kind eyes and smile as she did when she was in the full Dominican habit. Thank you for sharing the video. We had no idea what a tragic life she had at such a young age. We sure are glad she answered God's calling. You never forget your first grade teacher.

Avatar  Bobbie Jo Kelly 2 years agoReply

Let me tell you about the most wonderful sweetest soft spoken Aunt. Sr Anna Mae Kelly my "Aunt Clara"
my father Joseph Kelly nic-named her that decades ago because she was so much like the TV character "Aunt Clara from Bewitched."

My beloved Aunt Ann influenced my life so much she encouraged my love for art and music and she loved to listen to me play the piano.

Aunt Ann loved our family and genealogy. She taught me how to do our family history and the love of genealogy and I will carry that on for her.

Aunt Ann was a Chicago school teacher at St Rita's and she lived at St Rita's convent. I can remember spending a good portion of every summer as a little girl staying at the convent and the sisters there would let me run around and play all over the convent.

I am so blessed to have been her niece and to have been unconditionally loved by her. When Aunt Ann retired to the mother house I knew it was for the best but yet I also knew it was a change in life for her as well as our family.

I will miss our weekly calls, your voice, your love and must of all I will miss you. You will forever be loved and honored.

Your Niece,

Bobbie Jo Kelly
(Belleville Illinois)

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