Obituary of Sally Roundy Kelley
Sally Roundy Kelley died on December 28. She was born March 11, 1937 in Utah. She lived most of her adult life with her husband, Perry Kelley, in Weiser.
On the last day of her mortal life, we all knew she was dying. We were privileged with the gift of saying goodbye in person, holding hands, talking face to face. We also witnessed her goodbyes to other loved ones. One of these moments was over the phone with a dear friend who is the director of the final show Mom intended to act in: Steel Magnolias. Mom said to Dianne, “I guess you’re going to have to find someone else to fill my role.” This was the role of Ouiser, one of many parts she has played in productions in the Weiser Little Theater, but oh how many other roles she has filled throughout her life which cannot be replaced by finding someone else! We are all the beneficiaries of the many roles she has played.
One important role in her life was that of ministering sister in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints Weiser Second Ward. Mom loved the women she served. She gave everyone her undivided attention when she was with them. The result was a wide web of sisterhood within her spiritual family at church. She made everyone feel special, and they love her for that.
After she retired from a 20-year teaching career at Weiser High School, Mom was involved in many community groups including the Weiser Little Theater, the 20th Century Club, her book club, the Indianhead Fly Fishers, and the Lions Club. She found opportunities to volunteer in a wide array of areas in the community. Her role as an involved community member is unparalleled.
Her highest priority roles were that of wife, mother, grandmother, and great-grandmother. She and our dad, Perry Kelley, were married for 58 years, and they were fiercely dedicated to each other. They had a long-distance courtship, so when they did have the chance to be together in the year before their marriage, Dad says there was “a lot of smooching!” Mom was Dad’s best friend. This is a role that could never be replaced. They had the type of marriage that is the standard for all other marriages. Dad will miss Mom immensely. He finds solace in the many friendships that he maintains in Weiser as well as in his children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren.
As a mother, she was perfect for each of us: Suzy, Greg, Shannon, and Mike. We are all very different from each other, and that is thanks to her! Mom always encouraged us to be true to ourselves and follow our dreams and ambitions. This is a beautiful gift that she gave us—permission to be us! She was our biggest fan. Everything good that we have done is at least in part because of her.
The grandchildren and great-grandchildren have all been surrounded by Grandma’s love. They loved her hugs, tea parties, stories, songs, dress-ups, toys, and smiles. The love she poured on them has helped them to grow into wonderful people who also share love and kindness with those around them.
We have cried and laughed our way through Mom’s final days as we have rallied around her, and then as we have planned for her family graveside service. One of the reasons Mom loved theater so much was the human emotions it allows us to feel. Steel Magnolias reminds us that even at the time of death, all feelings are appropriate. As Truvy says, “Laughter through tears is my favorite emotion.” We have had a lot of laughter through tears this week, thanks to Mom. She always made us feel loved, and as Victor Hugo said, “The supreme happiness in life is the conviction that we are loved.”
Due to current restrictions, graveside services for Sally Kelley will be limited to family members. We plan to have a celebration of her life to include all of her vast network of friends and extended family later this spring.