Alexandra “Sandy” Kelly, 67, passed away at her home on December 21, 2021, surrounded by her family, following a fierce battle with pancreatic Cancer.
Sandy was born on July 15, 1954 to her parents Djorge and Vera (Aratski) Jovanovich in Chicago, IL. An only child, Sandy was the center of her parent’s world. Sandy was a natural performer and became involved in theater - and musical theater, in particular - early in life. By the time she reached high school she regularly performed in productions and choral shows at Lyons Township High School where she would shine on the stage and also make her closest lifelong friendships. In college Sandy continued to perform and compete in speech tournaments all over the country as a member of the Northern Illinois University Forensics team with great success. After leaving Northern Illinois, she returned to LaGrange and began a career managing a stock brokerage office before welcoming the surprise of her first child and making the decision to become a stay-at-home mom. Sandy always said raising her girls was the highlight of her life, and the Kelly girls enjoyed many adventures together throughout the years from long summer days at the pool to zoo trips to road trips singing show tunes at full volume. During her time as a stay-at-home parent, Sandy was involved in school, community and charity organizations.
Following a move to Michigan in 1992 Sandy began her career in retail management - a path that would take her through many twists and turns including event setup and decoration and the ability to shop for a living as a buyer for a boutique local retailer - a role that brought her great joy. Working retail gave Sandy the ability to use her gifts for performance to entertain and delight her staff and customers alike, and we know that so many in the Grand Rapids community enjoyed reconnecting with her in her various positions in Grand Rapids until her retirement in the Summer of 2019.
Retirement gave Sandy the ability to spend time on the things she loved the most including time with her granddaughter, Hannah, who she adored more than life itself, and spending summers at her beloved community pool. She volunteered her time serving on the board of her condo development, cooking and gardening.
Known for her incredible wit, bawdy sense of humor and distinct laugh - which could be heard often with her, Sandy will be remembered by all that knew her and missed by so many, but most of all her dedicated and loving family. Her daughters and their husbands, Kristen & Matt Loch, Lauren & Ira Coman, her cherished granddaughters Hannah and Beatrice, Cousins Nenad (Karen) Matich, Nikola Vlahovich, and Lisa (Ben) Curless, sister-in-law-twice-removed, Donna (Tom) Nachtrab and nieces Dawn (Larry) Gianetti and Meghan (Tyler) Green, and her adored lifelong friends Heidi Hough, Gary Leviton and Jim MIlio.
A memorial service will be held on Saturday June 11th at 11:30am at Fountain Street Church - 29 Fountain Street, Grand Rapids, MI 49503, with a brief lunch following. Please be advised that church standards and the family require masks for those that choose to join in person. In lieu of flowers, Donations to the Fountain Street Church Choice fund (https://www.fountainstreet.org/choicefund) or to Pancreatic Cancer Research (https://www.pancan.org) in Sandy’s name would be gratefully received.