With heavy hearts, the family of David “DK” Kelly announces his passing, which occurred at the Saint John Regional Hospital on Wednesday, March 6th, 2019, surrounded by his family. David was born in Saint John on December 11, 1978 to Linda Kelly-Hurst and Joe Kelly. DK was the Sea Dogs Head Equipment Manager for 13 years, winning three President Cups and the Memorial Cup. Before retirement from his role as Head Equipment Manager in 2017, DK was the only Head Equipment Manager in Sea Dogs’ history, having worked 805 regular season games. In 2018 he joined the Sea Dogs front office as Senior Advisor to Hockey Operations, before leaving the organization shortly thereafter to pursue philanthropic initiatives.
Prior to his time with the Sea Dogs, DK spent time with the Waco Wizards (WPHL), Milano Vipers (Italy) and Bracknell Bees (British Super League). He began his career as a visiting team dressing room attendant with the AHL’s Saint John Flames, and was eventually promoted to Assistant Equipment Manager. He also worked extensively with Hockey Canada’s Program of Excellence.
After being diagnosed with cancer in 2014, DK made it his mission to take the disease head-on and inspire others worldwide. He was known across the hockey and sports world for his #TeamDK movement and his prominent Monkey Band-Aid Project, which raised over $25,000 for oncology nurses’ education funds.
David’s great loves besides his family were chicken Vito’s style, the Boston Red Sox, country music, cannolis from Mike’s Pastry, live concerts, travel, his truck, hockey schools, encouraging kids in hockey, Hometown Hockey with Ron and Tara, and spending all the time he could with his nephew, Jacob.
Celebrating his incredible life are his parents; Linda Kelly-Hurst (Bruce) and Joe Kelly (Carol), his partner, Dominique Leger, sister Jen Kelly-Barnett (Matt), nephew Jacob Barnett, his beloved dog, Legend, as well as many aunts, uncles, cousins, and the rest of his cherished extended family.
DK was pre-deceased by his grandmothers; “Nan” Lillian Galbraith and Anna Kelly, grandfather Art Kelly, and his chosen grandfather, Tom Woods.
The family would like to extend their heartfelt thanks to the Saint John Regional Hospital ; Oncology, 3D South, Registration/Admitting, and Pharmacy; the late Dr. Rae, Dr. Garland, Dr. Cassie, Dr. Burnell, Dr. Awan, Dr. Kay, as well as the Palliative Care doctors; the Saint John Sea Dogs organization, Trevor Georgie, Scott McCain, the Boston Red Sox, the Princess Margaret Hospital in Toronto, as well as all of his supporters worldwide.
Resting at RiverCross Church, 61 Forbes Drive, with visitation being held on Monday and Tuesday from 2-8 p.m. A service celebrating DK’s life will be held from the church on Wednesday, March 13th at 1:00 p.m. In lieu of flowers, donations to the David “DK” Kelly Memorial Bursary Fund (https://www.canadahelps.org/en/charities/the-greater-saint-john-community-foundation/campaign/DK) would be appreciated. Arrangements are under the care and direction of Fundy Funeral Home, 230 Westmorland Road, Saint John.
"Forward is Forward"
For those unable to attend the service, it will be livestreamed; please visit this link to view: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jptJa9Ph4BU