Bruce Frank Kelley, age 85, passed away Friday, May 25 at the Veterans Home in King with his family by his side. Bruce was born Nov. 24, 1932 in Rhinelander to Clarence and Myrtle (Alexander) Kelley.
He attended Zion Lutheran Grade School and Rhinelander High School; joined the Navy in April 1951 and was honorably discharged in 1955.
When Bruce returned home from the military, he was employed by the Rhinelander Paper Company for 38 years. He enjoyed diving on shipwrecks in Lake Superior with his “best friend” Dick Metz and others. They recovered many artifacts throughout their diving years and back then they were able to keep them. In 2012, they donated them back to the National Park Service at Isle Royale, Mich. Bruce also enjoyed riding his Harley, going to the Indy 500 and spending time in Florida with Dick.
After retiring from the paper mill, Bruce attended Nicolet College, where he studied for and received his private pilot’s license on Aug. 22, 1995.
Bruce was preceded in death by his parents. He is survived by his wife, Kathy; children, Brian (Tina) Kelley of Bloomer, Kathy (Greg) VerBruggen of Abrams, Chad (Julie) McDermid of Townsend, Mark (Kim) Jeranek of Stoughton and Jayme Miller of Sugar Camp; five grandchildren, Josh, Aaron, Brianna, Faith and Alyssa; three great-grandchildren, Kelly Rose, Matthew and Eli; two brothers, Dallas (Barb) Kelley and Pat Kelley, both of Rhinelander.
Our family would like to thank the veterans homes of Chippewa Falls and King for taking good care of Bruce for the last several years, including the nursing staff, office staff (Carol), Bill and Suzy from hospice and Chaplin Wayne, for all your prayers and for spending time with us. Upon Bruce’s request, there will be no services.