James W. Kelley, M.D.
1915 – 2009
Dr. James W. Kelley, 94, Topeka, KS passed away on Monday, August 10, 2009, at Lexington Park. Dr. Kelley was born January 22, 1915, in Wilmington, DE, the son of John W. and Bertha (Faulkner) Kelley. He served in the U.S. Army during World War II and was awarded the Bronze Star for service between August 1944 and May 1945. He performed more than 400 major operations during his combat service with the 105th Evacuation Hospital in Europe and was named Chief Surgeon of the 5th Auxiliary Surgical Group. He graduated from the University of Delaware and Duke University School of Medicine in Durham, NC. He was the first resident in Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery at Duke. Dr. Kelley had a private practice in Tulsa, OK, from 1949 until 1970. He served as head of the Student Health Department at Washburn University from 1971 until his retirement in 1981. He served as President of the Tulsa County Medical Society and the Oaks Country Club in Tulsa. He was chosen by the Topeka Chamber of Commerce for the Top Hat Award based on his commitment and service to Washburn University. He was the President of the Ichabod Club and named Outstanding Ichabod of the Year from 1976-77. He was certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery, a member of both the American Society of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery and the American Association of Plastic Surgery. He was a member of the First Presbyterian Church of Topeka where he served as an Elder. Dr. Kelley was a long time member of the Topeka Fellowship, which is actively involved in the annual Governor's Prayer Breakfast. Dr. Kelley married Elizabeth Ramsey on September 15, 1945, in Tulsa, OK. She survives. Other survivors include their children: Ann Kelley, Santa Cruz, CA, Carolyn Kelley, Seattle, WA, Patricia Kelley Ladue, Phoenix, AZ; and three grandsons, Tyler Ladue, Travis Ladue and Scotland Schieber. He was preceded in death by his sister, Addie Calhoun.