Redmond Food Bank Honors One of Its Own

November 01, 2021 | Church | Alisha Hamel

On Aug. 14, 2021, Oregon’s Redmond Church dedicated a new walk-in freezer and refrigerator to the Redmond Adventist Food Bank in memory of John Kelley, the long-time food bank director.

During Kelley's final days, he asked that any memorial funds be used to fund a walk-in freezer for the food bank. He knew that a walk-in freezer would greatly expand the food bank’s ability to serve the hungry in the Redmond community. Kelley was so well loved that money poured in. Not only were they able to buy the walk-in freezer but there were also enough funds to buy a walk-in refrigerator, too!

Kelley directed the food bank for more than 10 years. He enhanced its ability to serve the local community by creating a welcoming, cheerful environment for both the volunteers and those who were served. He developed new partnerships with local businesses and had great working relationships with organizations like Neighbor Impact. 

Kate Keltz, Kelley’s daughter said in her memorial speech, “Dad walked me through his vision of what he felt was needed at the food bank and I can say this is beyond his wildest dreams. There is now room to store a John-sized serving of ice cream. … This dedication is proof of the continuing impact of dad’s life in this community.”

Randy Folkenberg, Redmond Church pastor, told the story of how a client needed help with her hotel bill. He went to the hotel to discover the bill was $1,000. After Folkenberg's gasp, the hotel clerk asked which church he was from. Folkenberg answered and the clerk responded, "Oh, John Kelley’s church," then reduced the bill down to $180.

Kelley is well remembered and honored throughout the Redmond community as well as the Milo and Forest Lake communities where he served as a long-time maintenance worker and was loved by all.