Alumni Open renamed for late BSHS grad

September 23, 2015

Starting this year, the Bonner Springs-Edwardsville Education Foundation’s Alumni Open will honor a late alumni who was a model of community support.

Bill Kelly, Bonner Springs High School Class of 1986, died in August of last year at just 46 years old, and Jerry Abbott, foundation director, said the foundation was quick to honor Kelly in the name of the Alumni Open, set Oct. 2 at Sunflower Golf Course. Abbott said Kelly will always be remembered in the community as a champion and advocate of education.

“He was an avid supporter of the Alumni Open and had a team and a hole sponsorship at the event each year,” Abbott said. “Bill was also a business partner of the foundation and renewed his commitment each year in the support of the foundation and its programs to assist educators and students in our district.”

Kelly’s sister, Debbie Breuer, and his son, Wyatt Kelly, have joined the event’s organizational committee.

“Of course we were honored, just humbled, when they said they wanted to name this after Bill,” Breuer said.

Breuer said her brother’s involvement in the community began in grade school. The youngest of eight children, he and his siblings attended Sacred Heart Catholic School through eighth grade when it was still located in Bonner Springs, so Breuer said the family was often involved in fundraisers and other events in Bonner.

“It just evolved to make him a good community person,” she said.

Kelly also was the only one of his siblings to attend BSHS — the family farm was located in the Basehor-Linwood school district, so his older siblings had attended high school in Basehor. But that didn’t stop Kelly from getting involved. At BSHS, he was a three-sport athlete, an All State football player and was named Outstanding Male Athlete of the Year and the Kansas City Star Student Scholar Athlete of the year.

Kelly graduated from Pittsburg State University with a degree in construction management. He was vice president and chief operating officer of Omega Door, Kansas City, Kan., and just before his death had celebrated 15 years with the company.

He was vice president of Omega Construction Services of Kansas City, Kan., and he was a member of the Cookson President’s Council. He was an active board member of the Catholic Education Foundation for the last two years of his life, where his involvement showed he truly cared about under-privileged children and their families.

As for his involvement with the education foundation, Breuer said it was just ingrained in her brother to continue his community support.

“He felt it important, that Bonner was good to him and he just wanted to give back,” she said. “He thought it was a worthy cause.”

Proceeds from the Alumni Open will go to the Foundation Scholarship Fund, and in the spring, events such as the Alumni Open allowed the foundation to distribute 18 $1,000 scholarships to graduating seniors.

The Alumni Open welcomes all golfers, including BSHS graduates who wish to demonstrate their skills while renewing old acquaintances. Registration will begin at 10:30 a.m., with a box lunch and a putting contest at 10:45 a.m. Tee off will be 11:30 a.m. Entry Fees are $115 per individual or $460 per team. The entry fee entitles the golfer to participate in contests on the course, a door prize ticket and refreshment tickets.

This year’s event will also include an exclusive raffle and silent auction for participants and event supporters. Among the items being raffled is a Salvador Perez signed World Series base.

For information, contact Abbott 913-422-5600 ext. 1022.

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