Cover photo for Clarence Joe Kelley, USAF Colonel, Retired's Obituary
Clarence Joe Kelley, USAF Colonel, Retired Profile Photo
1941 Clarence 2022

Clarence Joe Kelley, USAF Colonel, Retired

April 14, 1941 — December 2, 2022

Waco, Texas

Clarence Joe (CJ) Kelley, departed this life on December 2, 2022 in Waco, Texas surrounded by his loved ones. CJ was born April 14, 1941 in Palestine, Texas to the late Randle and Mahalia Kelley. Visitation will be on Tuesday, December 20, 2022, 5:30 PM to 8:00 PM at Grace Gardens Funeral Home. 8220 Woodway Drive, Waco, TX 76712. Wearing a mask is preferred.

CJ graduated from AM Story High School in 1960, Palestine, Texas, and attended Texas Southern University on a football scholarship in 1964 where he earned a Bachelor of Science in Industrial Education. In 1974 he completed a Master of Science in Systems Management at University of Southern California.

CJ's military career began in 1964 as Second Lieutenant.. Among his many assignments were Mississippi, Nevada, Vietnam, Pentagon, Virginia, Nebraska, Alabama, Maine, and Germany. During CJ's 28 ½ career, he was Chief, Communications Electronics Maintenance Branch, Offutt AFB, Nebraska, Commander of 2192nd Communications Squadron, Loring AB, Maine,      Director of Communications Control at Defense Communications Agency (DCS), Arlington, Virginia, Commander of 1964th Communications Command Control, Air Traffic Control and Data Systems, Ramstein, Germany, Deputy Director of Information Technology for United States Air Forces Europe, Ramstein, Germany.

CJ enjoyed fishing, bowling, and woodworking and spending time with and sharing his childhood experiences with his grandchildren.

He leaves behind to cherish his memory and carry on the legacy of his life, Cleotha his devoted wife of 55 years, a daughter and two sons, Adrienne Barry, Waco, TX, Christopher, (Kelly), Rockwall, TX, Jason, (Teobesta), grandsons: Andrew, Christian, Matthew and Zion. Granddaughters, Breanna and Becca, and great granddaughter, Aliyah, and extended Texas family.

The Kelley family extends a special thank you to The Delaney at Lake Waco, Gentiva Hospice and Grace Gardens Funeral Home. May God bless you for your kindness during this time of bereavement. He is away from us physically but forever in our hearts. We love you. Rest in peace my love.

In lieu of flowers, contributions can be made to in CJ's honor.

Service Schedule

Past Services


Tuesday, December 20, 2022

5:30 - 8:00 pm (Central time)

Grace Gardens Funeral Home & Crematorium

8220 Woodway Drive, Woodway, TX 76712

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