Dan Kelly was respected and loved by his fellow Methodist preachers and especially by congregants of Fountain City United Methodist Church where he worshiped in retirement. Dan came full circle, having graduated from Central High School before going on to UT and seminary.
Jim Whedbee, former pastor of FC United Methodist, made the announcement on Facebook of the Rev. Kelly’s death. Jim told of a time when Dan tried to goad him into teaching a Sunday School class and Jim was resistant. “Well, you’re wasting your seminary education,” Dan said.
Whedbee said Dan Kelly never wasted his seminary education. “And our whole world is better off because of his presence among us.”
Dan’s friends quickly chimed in with stories.
Dan Buford Kelly, 93, spent 42 years as a minister in the Holston Conference. He pastored churches in Knox County, Kingsport, Chattanooga and Athens in Tennessee as well as churches in Virginia. He chaired the Conference Work Area on Evangelism and participated in evangelistic missions to Cuba, Haiti, Nicaragua, Costa Rica, Dominica, Ecuador and Africa (Liberia).
When Holston Conference began a mission project working with the J. J. Russell school in Monrovia, Liberia, Dan made multiple trips where he was instrumental in building a library; he collected and shipped books and thus acquiring the honor of the school library being named the Dan Kelly Library.
The family will receive friends from noon to 1 p.m. Wednesday, July 28, 2021, at Fountain City United Methodist Church, 212 Hotel Rd. A service will follow at 1 p.m. and a graveside service will be held the same day. Obituary information is here.