My project of writing about the children of David and Mary Ann Kelley has taken me much longer than anticipated. Nothing like the holiday season to push writing to the back burner!
Robert Studley Kelley, nicknamed Robby, was the youngest child born to David and Mary Ann Kelley. He was born in West Dennis, Mass., on 6 September 1898. His mother was 43 years old at his birth and his father was 56. He must have been named after his uncle Robert Studley. My father, Robert, was named after him. He had eight older siblings/half-siblings looking out for him. My grandmother, Milly, said he was adored by his siblings and had a fun-loving personality.
|Robby Kelley ca 1917|
For all of her life, my great-grandmother (his sister Ethel) kept the program from his graduation from the West Dennis Grammar School, which had a whopping seven graduates. Robby read an essay at the exercises.
He is listed in the 1900 census with his family. Robert S., born Sept. 1898, 1 year old. He is in the 1910 census with his parents and brother Harold in West Dennis. He was 11, could read, write, in school.
|Robby Kelley; writing is my grandmother Milly's|
Sadly Robby died on 19 October 1918, after contracting the flu during the 1918 outbreak. My grandmother said he caught it in Lowell, Mass., when visiting his fiancée Cora. He was just twenty years old and left behind a devastated fiancée, his parents and eight siblings to mourn his loss.
|Robby with his fiancee Cora (last name not known)|
Robby is buried at West Dennis Cemetery, in a plot with his parents and other family. His gravestone was likely quite a splurge for a family with limited funds. Most of them shared stones and some of the children did not have stones, at least none that have survived.