Sandy Kelley


Sandy Lee Kelley, 74, of Fairfield, IA passed away on Thursday, February 29, 2024, at the University of Iowa Hospital in Iowa City surrounded by her family after a courageous battle with kidney disease.  Funeral services will be held at 10:30 a.m. on Thursday, March 7, 2024, at the Eldon Assembly of God Church in Eldon, IA with Pastor John Cooper officiating.  Burial will be in the Iowaville Cemetery near Selma immediately following the service.  A visitation will begin at 2:00 p.m. on Wednesday, March 6, 2024, at the Cranston Family Funeral Home in Fairfield with the family present to greet friends from 5:00 p.m. until 7:00 p.m.  Memorial contributions in Sandy’s honor may be directed to the Polycystic Kidney Disease Foundation ( and may be mailed c/o Cranston Family
Funeral Home, P.O. Box 189, Fairfield, IA 52556. Friends may leave online condolences at

Sandy entered this life on October 8, 1949, in Douds, IA, to her loving parents, Vester and Letta Allman Hemm. She attended country school and eventually Van Buren Community Schools before venturing to California. There, her passion for country music flourished as she graced stages with her voice and bass guitar in a local country band.

Sandy eventually returned to Iowa where she met Tim Kelley, who would become her cherished partner in life. The couple united in matrimony in November of 1978 and journeyed through life’s moments side by side. Sandy had been working as a Certified Nursing Assistant and then at Acco Loudens in Fairfield before becoming a stay-at-home-mom. As the children grew older, she became the owner of Douds Café where she was famous in the community for her home cooked meals and meringue pies. Her gift for caring for others brought her back to the healthcare field. She went back to work as a Certified Nursing Assistant and then as a Medication Aide, with many of those years of service at Nelson’s Nursing Home in Fairfield, IA. She shared her care of others through her work at local nursing homes, where she provided comfort and care to many.

Sandy always found peace and rejuvenation in nature. An avid lover of fishing and camping, she savored every moment in the outdoors. The thing that brought her the most joy was her family. She cared deeply for her children and grandchildren, as well as her nieces and nephews. Sandy was always there to care for those around her.

While she joins her parents, Vester and Letta, and siblings, Edward, Leroy, and Evelyn, in eternal rest, her spirit lives on through her husband Tim; her children, David (Dawna) Burnett of Stockport, IA, Nathan Kelley (Jake Lanagan) of Tiffin, IA, and Kendra (Kyle) Green of Packwood, IA; her five grandchildren, Neva Burnett, James Kent, and Izzy, Jocelyn, and Everett Green; two great-grandchildren, Ellie Barber and Lyra Kent; and her siblings, Randy (Renee) Hemm and Iola Thomas.

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