Sanford Eldridge Kelley, Jr.


Claim this Obituary
Jonesport - Sanford Eldridge Kelley, Jr., 94, passed away on July 21, 2019. Born April 14, 1925 in Jonesport Maine, he was the son of the late Sanford and Etta Kelley Sr.
Sanford attended Jonesport High School, graduating Co-valedictorian in 1942. After graduating high school, he worked in a machine shop prior to serving in the army where he was stationed in Italy in 1943. After serving he attended Colburn Classical Institute prep school, then went on to the University of Maine, Orono to graduate with a degree in Chemical and Mechanical Engineering.
After graduation he moved to Anaheim California with two close friends in 1952, where he was employed at Quickset Lock company. He returned to Jonesport Maine after a year to support his family. Shortly after moving back east he moved to Connecticut after accepting a job at Pratt & Whitney Aircraft, where he worked as a mechanical engineer until his retirement in 1991.
Sanford married Bertha Mary Champion in 1957 and first resided in Cheshire Connecticut, then moved to Meriden Connecticut with their first-born child Sandra Elaine. They moved to their newly built house in Vernon Connecticut in 1963 where they lived until their retirement.
In 1991 Sanford and Bertha Mary retired to Jonesport Maine where he built their retirement home on the bay. Sanford became a well-respected blueberry farmer in his retirement years, specializing in fresh pak handpicked blueberries. In addition to farming blueberries, Sanford served on the Wild Blueberry Association of North American (WBANA) and the Jonesport town zoning commission as well as many other area associations that he had interests in.
Sanford was preceded by his wife of sixty-one years, Bertha Mary Kelley. He is survived by her four children, Sandra Elaine Busque and her husband Bradley of Simsbury Connecticut, Sanford Eldridge Kelley III of Jonesport Maine, Cynthia Ann Findeisen of Westery Rhode Island, Michael Fredrick Kelley and his wife Beth of Tolland Connecticut, several grandchildren and three great grandchildren.
Friends are invited to visit with the family from 10 am until time of funeral services at 11 am at the Sawyer Memorial Congregational Church in Jonesport on Thursday July 25, 2019. Interment will follow in Greenwood Cemetery. Condolences and memories may be shared at
To plant a tree in memory of Sanford Eldridge Kelley, Jr., please visit Tribute Store.
Published on July 22, 2019
Plant a tree in memory
of Sanford
Plant a tree

Obituary published in

Arrangements by

McClure Family Funeral Services

Get directions


Print Guestbook

A place to share condolences and memories.

Share your condolences and special memories.
The guestbook expires on October 20, 2019.

15 posts

Diane & Mickey
Aug 11, 2019
Sending heartfelt condolences to the family from Rhode Island
Nancy Rice
Aug 05, 2019
It was with immeasurable sadness that I learned last week of Sam's passing through a relative who lives in Maine. I am now 72, but my memories of Sam, and Bertha, go back to as a child in CT and up to my last visit with them to Jonesport in 2017. In Connecticut we connected through my Mother, Lois Mansfield Rice, from Jonesport. Sam was always upbeat and encouraging, challenging my desire to run, and a few times I stayed with them as a "mother's helper" to Bertha when Sandra was a baby. I delighted in his company, the last few visits over the last 5+ years walking much of the blueberry fields behind him, trying to keep up with his steady pace and take in all he was telling me about th...e family, fields and berries. He and Bertha were so generous with their time, and I enjoyed every minute I was able to see them. Sam was always welcoming, ever focused but patient, even when I surprised him with one visit to the factory, when he was in the middle of writing checks to his summer employees! Sam was a treasure and I will dearly miss him.Read more
Jul 25, 2019
So sorry to hear about your Dad's passing. Your parents are reunited again, that is a good thing.
Barbara Ann Kelley
Jul 25, 2019
Special thoughts, prayers and condolences to the Kelley family!
Seanna Annis
Jul 24, 2019
I have always enjoyed talking to Sanford either in his blueberry fields or at a blueberry meeting. He was someone people wanted to talk to for his knowledge and demeanor. He was a remarkable gentleman. I will very much miss him. I am very sorry for your loss.
Jul 24, 2019
Thought and prayers are with you
Nancy Herr
Jul 23, 2019
Sanford and Bertha were very special friends. I’m so glad I got to spend time with him these last weeks. He was such a joy and so interesting to talk with. Will miss you, our chats and holding your hand 😉 🥰
Sincere sympathies to the family.
Alan Peasley
Jul 23, 2019
My father, Edward, may have been one of the friends he went to Anaheim with.
Debbie Cunningham
Jul 23, 2019
What a wonderful man and family. You surely will be missed Sanford
Janet Flood Hooper
Jul 23, 2019
We will miss you! You were such a big part of our lives. Sending prayers to your family! Forever in our hearts love from the Flood Family
Lisa Griffin
Jul 23, 2019
My heart goes out to his family. He was a wonderful man.
Lisa Graham
Jul 23, 2019
I raked blueberries for him many years ago. I can’t say I enjoyed the job but always enjoyed conversations with him in the fields. So sorry for your loss
Laura Fish
Jul 23, 2019
Sorry to see the passing of such a wonderful man. My prayers to the family.
Jean Dunning
Jul 23, 2019
I always looked forward to seeing Sanford when I was in Jonesport. He was interested in so many things and willing to chat about them. We also shared a love for UCONN women's basketball and enjoyed discussing the games, players, etc.
He will be missed by so many in the community and beyond.
My sympathies to his family-
Holly Davis
Jul 23, 2019
We will miss you ❤️