Clara Anita S. Kelley


Mrs. Clara Anita S. Kelley passed away peacefully in her sleep Wednesday, Dec. 29, 2021, when her late husband, Jimmy R. Kelley Sr., and Jesus came to take her to her heavenly home. Her beloved son, Jeff, was by her side. She was born in McLeansville, N.C., on June 1, 1934. She was the daughter of the late Cecil T. Stephenson and the late Clara M. Stephenson.

Clara and Jimmy were married Oct. 9, 1954, while he was in the Army. She took very much pride in being an Army wife. After retiring from the Army in 1974, they made their home in North Carolina and opened a small engine repair shop. In 1981, they moved their family and the shop, Shore Saw and Mower, to Painter. In Clara’s free time she loved going to bingo with friends, going to the slots with her son, Jeff, and working crossword puzzles. The highlights of her life were her family, especially her grandchildren.

Clara is survived by a son, Jeffrey S. Kelley, and his wife, Rita; three granddaughters, Candy and Anita, of Missouri, and Meagan, of Florida; two grandsons, Bobby, of Texas, and Gregory, of Pungoteague; daughter-in-law, Paulette I. Kelley, of Pungoteague; two step-granddaughters; two step-grandsons; five great-grandchildren; seven step-grandchildren; and numerous nieces, nephews, and cousins. Besides her parents and husband, Clara was predeceased by two sons, Jimmy “Robert” Kelley Jr. and Greg N. Kelley Sr.; one daughter, Kathy A. Harmon; one brother, C.T.; and six sisters, Vera, Ruth, Catherine, Irene, Loraine, and Inez.

Graveside services were held Sunday, Jan. 2, 2022, at 2 p.m., at the Kelley Family Cemetery, 30175 Harborton Road, Pungoteague, with Pastor Tom Kellam officiating.

Memorial contributions may be made to Painter Volunteer Fire Company, Attn. Patricia Sturgis, Treasurer, P.O. Box 275, Painter, VA 23420, or to VVA Chapter #614, P.O. Box 771, Onley, VA 23418-0771.

Online condolences may be sent to the family at

Arrangements were made by Doughty Funeral Home in Exmore.
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