Fr Frank O’Kelly was born in Derry, on 27th September 1935. He was educated at Clady NS, St Eugene’s and St Columb’s, Derry. He came to St Columban’s, Dalgan Park in September 1954 and was ordained priest on 21st December 1960.
Frank was appointed to the Philippines and to the Zambales Region of that country. In his initial years he served in Olongapo, Subic, Castilejos and Palaung. There followed a four-year appointment in Coto Mines, and a ten-year period in Sta Cruz.
He was assigned in Cabangan in 1991-92 when Mount Pinotubo erupted and he was deeply involved in efforts to help the people after that disaster.
He served for a long periods in Candalaria beginning in 1993 before being assigned to the Central House in Zambales. There he did much valuable work visiting prisoners in the local jail in Olongapo.
As his health was precarious, Frank was reassigned to Ireland where he worked with prisoners in Mountjoy Jail. He celebrated Sunday Eucharist in both the men’s and women’s prisons; he cherished this ministry and was much appreciated by the prisoners.
Frank was confined to the Nursing Home from 2016 until his death. He loved to sing and had a remarkable tenor voice, he was always well dressed, and the walls of his room were filled with an eclectic collection of framed pictures that he had collected over the years.
Frank died on 11th December 2023. May he rest in peace.