Emily (Bavar) Kelly

Tributes~Emily (Bavar) Kelly

Emily (Bavar) Kelly
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Date of Birth: 
Date of Death: 
July 23 2003

Emily Bavar Kelly broke one of the biggest stories in Central Florida history when she was an editor at the Orlando Sentinel. In 1965, she discovered and wrote that it was Walt Disney who was buying thousands of acres of rural land southwest of Orlando, and that he planned to build a new theme park there.

Emily was born in El Paso, Texas, and raised in Dallas. She earned a degree in journalism from Texas Woman's University in Denton and after
a brief modeling career, she moved to Central Florida and was a manager for a bottling plant. She married Max Louis Bavar in the late 1940s and divorced in 1970.

Emily joined the Sentinel in the early 1950s and worked as a society columnist, a reporter on the city desk, feature writer and a magazine editor. In 1977, she married Lawrence Kelly, a retired executive with Amoco Oil Company. She retired in the 1980s but continued writing for the Chicago Tribune.

Emily was a member of the Cathedral Church of Saint Luke in downtown Orlando, and also belonged to the Rosalind Club.

Emily was also a member of the Third Friday Book Club for 33 years! This is the longest running book club in the history of Central Florida. She is first mentioned in the club notes on the membership list for 1980. She served as club secretary from 1994-1995, and was last mentioned in July 2003: "A memorial was made to the Orange County Library for Mrs. Laurence Kelly." Read more about the Third Friday Book Club at OrlandoMemory.info http://orlandomemory.info/memory/organization/third-friday-book-club

Place of Birth: 
El Paso, Texas, United States
Place of Death: 
Orlando, Florida, United States
Primary State of Residence: 
Orlando, Florida, United States

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