Friday, January 25, 2008

Tragedy on the homefront:

"Tragedy on the homefront: Rockland woman who died after house fire worried about her daughter in Iraq"

The grief stretched all the way to Iraq, where Kelly-Nelson’s 22-year-old
daughter serves as a private first class in the Army. Deanna Kelly graduated
from Weymouth High School in 2004, and often seen at the Weymouth Police Station
visiting her mother while home on leave.‘‘She couldn’t have been a better
support system and friend,’’ Mayhew said.Kerrin and her mother were regulars at
the Weymouth post office, where Deanna’s picture hangs on a bulletin board
alongside other locals deployed overseas. They would mail supplies to Deanna
just about every day, and the whole family would help in CarePacks’ group
packing sessions.Even though Kelly-Nelson’s home was damaged by fire, a Blue
Star Mothers Banner, hung by mothers with sons and daughters in the military,
still hangs in the front window.‘‘There wasn’t a time that I’d talk to her that
she wouldn’t talk all about her daughter and how proud she is of her,’’ Mayhew
said. ‘‘Sometimes she’d be in the middle of conversation and say, ‘Got to go,
Deanna’s on the other line.’’’

By JACK ENCARNACAOThe Patriot Ledger
WEYMOUTH - Kerrin Kelly-Nelson was good at concealing her worry about her daughter Deanna, an Army private serving in Iraq.But if a few days passed without hearing from her, the unease would show, friends said. Deanna knew this, and did her best to keep her mother from worrying.‘‘Every time Deanna had a moment or an opportunity, she was letting her mom know that she was OK,’’ said Stephen Doyle, president of CarePacks, a Weymouth-based nonprofit that sends supplies to troops. ‘‘In these situations ... tragedy is usually on the other end. It’s usually the soldier over there that you’re hearing about, not the family. It’s just so sad.’’Friends expressed shock as word spread that Kelly-Nelson, a Weymouth police dispatcher and an Army veteran herself, died Wednesday after a fire in her Rockland home.Authorities are investigating how Kelly-Nelson died. Firefighters found her unconscious in an upstairs bedroom after a propane tank in the first-floor kitchen exploded. An autopsy has yet to be performed. The cause of the fire has also yet to be determined.The details of the fire puzzled many who were close to her, including friend Jeannie Mayhew.Firefighters said a tank of propane gas, the kind used with outdoor grills, was left near the gas stove in the house. The tank exploded after a fire started in the kitchen.‘‘It is so confusing because she’s a 911 operator, I can’t imagine her even putting something so flammable next to a stove,’’ Mayhew said. ‘‘Kerrin and I always joked that she didn’t cook, so maybe she thought leaving the tank near the stove was OK. I also know Kerrin didn’t smoke in the house because it bothered (her husband). She would often call me from outside while smoking a cigarette.’’

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Anonymous said...

Kerrin was a great mom and a supporter of the military , having served in the Army herself. I cant imagine the pain her poor daughter is going through to have lost her mom while in Iraq. God Bless you Deanna may your moms spirt be with you on the fighting fields and may she forever protect you!! RIP Kerrin you will be forever missed , forever in my heart I will miss you dearly! Jeannie

Anonymous said...

Kerrin was like a mother to me over the past 11 years. She will be missed by everyone so much. My heart goes out to my best friend Deana, her sister Danee, and her family she leaves behind.
She was a wonderful person, she was thoughtful, and truly sincere. It saddens me to have to say goodbye and the only thing we can hold on to is someday meeting her up there in heaven.
I love you very much and I will miss our weekend phone calls and family get togethers. you are an inspiration to me and the rest of us girls.
Rest in peace, I love you and I will see you in heaven.

Anonymous said...

Kiki and Jeannie-
Hugz to you both. I loved my mummah so very much and it is just an awful thing to happen.
Its so hard, and so unfair. I can't express it enough how hurt and angry i am.
But as a soldier i must keep trecking on. Mummah would have wanted it that way. She was proud of me until the moment of her passing, and i will make her proud of me for many years to come while she watches me from heaven
God bless you 2 .