Bryan Patrick Kelly
Klamath Falls, Oregon
July 16, 2004
|Died due to injuries received from enemy action in Al Anbar Province, Iraq.|
For Some Memorial Service Snapshots, Click photo below:
July 28, 2004
|From Donna & Ryan Huntsman 08/01/04:
Bryan was the best son-in-law I almost had.
|Lance Cpl. Bryan P. Kelly of Klamath, Oregon was a 2001 graduate of Klamath Union High School. His father is a former detective in the Klamath County sheriff's office, and his mother is active in community theater. He joined the Marine Corps in June 2002 and in 2003 graduated with honors from the Marine Corps Basic Combat Engineer Course. As a child he would often pretend to be firefighter, dressing up in rain jackets and dragging around a garden hose. The picnic table was his fire engine, and shrubs were the fires he was trying to put out. As a young man he worked as a volunteer firefighter and served in the Police Explorers. He met Klamath Falls native Kate at a skate park when he was 11, and had proposed on the day after Thanksgiving. The couple were to be wed Nov. 27. Bryan was a cheerful man who was seldom with out a smile. He had sort of a grin; he knew they were people back home supporting him and waiting for him. He was 21.|
|From Captain Keith Bartleson 12/17/04:
Dear Sir or Madam,
|Oregon Marine killed in Iraq
KLAMATH FALLS, Ore. — A Marine from Oregon has become one of the latest casualties in the war in Iraq, officials said Monday.
Lance Cpl. Bryan P. Kelly, 21, of Klamath Falls, died July 16 after he was wounded in Anbar province, according to the Department of Defense.
Kelly was assigned to the 1st Combat Engineer Battalion, 1st Marine Division, I Marine Expeditionary Force at Camp Pendleton, Calif.
Officials at Camp Pendleton declined to provide details about his death.
Gov. Ted Kulongoski on Monday asked that flags be flown at half-staff around the state on Tuesday in honor of Kelly.
“Lance Cpl. Kelly’s bravery, commitment, and sacrifice will not be forgotten,” said Kulongoski, a former Marine. “Our thoughts and prayers are with his family and the many other families who still have loved ones away at war.”
Kelly, a 2001 graduate of Klamath Union High School, is the second Marine from Klamath Falls killed in Iraq.
His father, Patrick Kelly, is a former detective in the Klamath County sheriff’s office, and his mother, Joani Kelly, is active in community theater, according to a report in The Herald and News in Klamath Falls.
Two Marines drove from Eugene with a chaplain to notify the family, Klamath County Sheriff Tim Evinger told the newspaper.
The sheriff said he remembered the business-like, “alpha green” uniforms of the Marines, and he looked around the living room at the photos of Bryan Kelly.
“He was a real easy-going kind. He joined the Police Explorers, following in his father’s footsteps,” Evinger told the Klamath Falls newspaper. “He was fun to be around, a real good kid. We’re going to miss him.”
Kelly joined the Marine Corps in June 2002 and in 2003 graduated with honors from the Marine Corps Basic Combat Engineer Course.
|Oregon soldier killed in Iraq honored
KLAMATH FALLS, Ore. — Gov. Ted Kulongoski flew home from the Democratic National Convention to honor a Marine who had dreamed of becoming a volunteer firefighter alongside his best friend.
Kulongoski spoke Wednesday evening at a public memorial service for Lance Cpl. Bryan Kelly, the second Marine from Klamath Falls to die fighting in Iraq.
“Klamath Falls has been especially hard hit by this war,” Kulongoski said.
“I can’t bring Bryan Kelly back to the warm and loving arms of his family,” he said, looking down at the parents of the slain 21-year-old. “But I promise this, your son will not be forgotten.”
A 2001 Klamath Union High School graduate, Kelly had been serving his second tour of duty when he was killed July 16 by a roadside bomb in Iraq’s Anbar province.
He was the seventh Marine from Oregon to die in Iraq.
Lance Cpl. Gary Van Leuven, who graduated from Klamath Falls’ Mazama High School in 2002, was killed in Iraq in April. Kulongoski has gone to services for all seven of the fallen Oregon Marines.
Kelly had joined the Marines after the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks, according to his best friend, Capt. Mark Shea of Klamath County Fire District No. 4.
“That is what he felt he had to do,” Shea said.
As children, Shea said the two would often pretend to be firefighters, dressing up in rain jackets and dragging around a garden hose. The picnic table was their fire engine, and shrubs were the fires they were trying to put out.
“Our parents wondered why the trees and bushes grew so well, but if you put as much water as we did on anything, it would grow,” Shea said.
Kelly also worked as a volunteer firefighter and served in the Police Explorers while growing up.
He met Klamath Falls native Kate Huntsman at a skate park when he was 11, and had proposed on the day after Thanksgiving. The couple were to be wed Nov. 27.
“As his father said, ‘You couldn’t ask for a better son,”’ Kulongoski said.
Others remembered Kelly as a cheerful man who was seldom with out a smile.
1st Lt. Casey Farrell, who was Kelly’s platoon commander for seven months, said the soldier would often lay on his cot and shuffle through photos of family and friends during down time.
“He had sort of a grin; he knew they were people back home supporting him and waiting for him,” Farrell said.
--- Associated Press
|From The Union-Tribune utsandiego.com
Fallen: Bryan P. Kelly, Marine lance corporal
|(reprinted from the HeraldAndNews.com, July 29, 2004)
Family, town share grief over loss of Bryan Kelly
By DYLAN DARLING
H&N Staff Writer
Yellow firefighter boots and a well-worn helmet sat empty next to a photograph of Marine Lance Cpl. Bryan Kelly as Klamath Falls said goodbye Wednesday to a second Marine killed in the war in Iraq.
"Klamath Falls has been especially hard hit by this war," said Gov. Ted Kulongoski, who spoke at a public memorial service.
Two ceremonies were held to honor Kelly - a morning service for those close to the 21-year-old and an evening service for the public in his hometown.
Kelly, who was on his second tour of duty in Iraq, had wanted to return and be a volunteer firefighter. The boots and helmet were the ones he wore as a volunteer with Klamath County Fire District No. 4.
"I can't bring Bryan Kelly back to the warm and loving arms of his family ... but I promise this, your son will not be forgotten," Kulongoski said, looking down at Kelly's parents from a podium.
"As his father said, 'You couldn't ask for a better son,' " Kulongoski said.
A 2001 Klamath Union High School graduate, Kelly was killed in action July 16 by a roadside bomb in Iraq's Al Anbar Province. He was manning the machine-gun turret of a Humvee when a manufactured explosive device went off, said Marine Sgt. P.V. Bland at the public service.
Lance Cpl. Gary Van Leuven, a 2002 graduate of Mazama High School, was killed in combat in April. Kelly and Van Leuven are among seven Marines from Oregon to die in Iraq. Kulongoski, a Marine veteran, has gone to services for all seven and flew from the Democratic National Convention in Boston to attend the Klamath Falls ceremony.
Kelly had joined after the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, feeling he needed to serve his country.
"That is what he felt he had to do," said Kelly's best friend, Capt. Mark Shae of Klamath County Fire District No. 4.
The two had shared a dream of being firefighters together since they met when Shea was 7. They would dress up in rain jackets and grab a garden hose. The picnic table was their fire engine, and shrubs were the fires they were trying to put out.
"Our parents wondered why the trees and bushes grew so well - but if you put as much water as we did on anything, it would grow," Shae said.
Kelly's first big move from his parents' house was down the block to Shae's house so the two could get to fire calls together quicker. He later left to go fight in Iraq.
After Shae spoke at the public service, he had the firefighters and law enforcement officials turn up their radios to hear dispatch give a final call for Bryan Kelly. The radios squelched and beeped the alarm warning of a fire before the dispatcher gave a message honoring Kelly. She ended with, "Thanks for serving our country."
Wednesday morning, fire trucks, an ambulance and police squad cars mixed in with the sedans, SUVs and pickup trucks parked around the memorial service for friends and family at a Klamath Falls cemetery.
In the crowd of more than 100 were family members and friends, Marines, firefighters, police officers and sheriff's deputies - all people Kelly had touched in his 21 years, including his two older brothers, David and Sean, and parents, Patrick and Joani.
"He had a tenacious desire to succeed," said Mountain Allbritton, the girlfriend of David Kelly. Allbritton spoke at the private service on behalf of the family.
Six of Kelly's Marine brothers carried his flag-draped casket from a white hearse to a stand in front of the Acacia Veterans Memorial, a tribute Eternal Hills has for fallen veterans, this morning.
At the evening public service, almost 1,000 people were joined by the governor.
Somber patriotic songs played over public address system before and after the memorial service.
Pastor Bill Swartz of Suburban Heights Baptist Church, where the Kellys attend, led both services.
He said he would often get calls from Kelly in Iraq on Sundays, interrupting his prayers and preparations for church, but it was a welcome interruption. Kelly would tell Swartz he could feel the power of his prayers.
"He said, 'My heart belongs to God, everything else belongs to the Marine Corps,' " Swartz said.
He said Kelly often wore a smile that made him nothing but teeth and ears.
"He was truly a person who could light up people around him," he said.
That smile was something he carried even in the rough military fatigues of a Marine.
"Everyone here today would know what kind of person Bryan was," said 1st Lt. Casey Farrell, who was Kelly's platoon commander for seven months during his first tour of duty.
Farrell, who is from Chicago, said Marines eat, sleep and fight together and have a camaraderie like no other.
During their tour, Farrell said the Marines in his platoon called a bombed-out concrete building home. His cot was toe-to-toe with Kelly's.
When they had down time, Kelly would lie on his cot with his shirt off to beat the heat and his headphones on to drown out the sounds of war. He would look up at photos of friends and family he taped to the wall and shuffle through a stack of even more photos.
"He had sort of a grin," Farrell said. "He knew there were people back home supporting him and waiting for him."
Some of his favorite photos were ones of Kate Huntsman, a Klamath Falls girl he met at a skating rink when he was 11 and had dated occasionally since.
"He said, 'Sir, I think I'm going to ask this girl to marry me,' " Farrell said.
Between his two tours, he did just that. He proposed the day after Thanksgiving and the couple were to be wed on Nov. 27.
Farrell said he and Bryan Kelly would also talk about home and had an ongoing debate about whose dad was tougher.
"Seeing Mr. Kelly here today, I think Bryan won," he said.
A retired Klamath County sheriff's detective and former Klamath Falls police trainer, Patrick Kelly now manages the Gull Station at South Sixth Street and Washburn Way.
Farrell ended his words with a tearful salute to his fallen friend.
Folded American flags were given to Joani Kelly and Huntsman after a gun salute and playing of taps. Kulongoski also gave Joani Kelly a flag at the public service.
Patrick Kelly stood and thanked the gathering at the end of the service as many filed past the casket of the young Marine.
Governor helped get Marine home
Gov. Ted Kulongoski helped fallen Klamath Falls Marine Lance Cpl. Bryan Kelly get home last week.
Sheriff Tim Evinger, who is a friend of the Kellys, got a call from members of the family Wednesday, July 21, who were trying to figure out the logistics of getting the young Marine's body back to Klamath Falls.
The U.S. Marine Corps can fly a fallen Marine to large commercial airports, but from there families need to figure out the arrangements, Evinger said. Thus, the Kellys were trying to arrange a flight from Sacramento, Reno or Portland.
"It was very important to the family to have Bryan fly into Klamath Falls, so he could be there when the (extended) family got there," he said.
Just after his talk with the Kellys, Evinger saw Kulongoski, who was in Klamath Falls last week. He told the governor of the predicament.
Two hours later, the governor called and said that he would take care of getting a flight.
Friday, an Oregon National Guard C-23 plane flew Kelly's body to Kingsley field, where firefighters, police officers and sheriff deputies stood at attention and a Marine honor guard took him off the plane.
|Tuesday, July 20. 2004
Governor Schwarzenegger Issues Statement on Death of Camp Pendleton Marine Lance Cpl. Bryan P. Kelly
Governor Schwarzenegger today issued the following statement regarding the death of Lance Cpl. Bryan P. Kelly of Klamath, OR, who was stationed at Camp Pendleton, CA:
"Maria and I send our heartfelt condolences to Bryan's family during this time of mourning and grief. Bryan has left behind a legacy of freedom, honor and courage. He will be deeply missed by all whose lives he touched."
Lance Cpl. Kelly, 21, died July 16 due to injuries received from enemy action in Al Anbar Province, Iraq. He was assigned to 1st Combat Engineer Battalion, 1st Marine Division, I Marine Expeditionary Force at Camp Pendleton, CA.
In honor of Lance Cpl. Kelly, Capitol flags will be flown at half-staff.
|From Babtist Press bpnews.net
Community remembers soldier who loved to be in worship
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