RIP Larry Kelley: The Most Legendary Citizen Journalist Blogger In Massachusetts History And A Huge Loss To The Amherst Community
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It’s with great sorrow we found out last night that Larry Kelley, a local blogger from Amherst who runs the “Only in the Republic of Amherst” blog, was killed in a head on accident on Route 9 in Belchertown. Just hours before dying he published his final blog covering UMass students making their campus a sanctuary campus (whatever that means).
A little history between Larry Kelley and Turtleboy…..
We first found out who he was in March of 2015. As a resident of Amherst, Larry Kelley was never fond of college students (particularly at UMass) who got too drunk, destroyed property, and got arrested. As a regular at the district courthouse in Belchertown he often documented UMass students who were arrested for a variety of crimes of dooshnozzelry.
Larry first came to our attention because he was very outspoken with his desire to curb gigantic parties at UMass. And as a former UMass student who loved the Hobart Hodown and other gigantic parties, Turtleboy didn’t like this. We thought he was a crotchety old man trying to instigate bad town-gown relationships.
We were wrong.
Larry Kelley is a taxpayer who goes to every School Committee and Board of Selectman meeting. He had every right to be concerned about tens of thousands of non-Amherst residents, coming to his town, destroying it, using town services, and then driving back to Beverly for the summer.
So yea, Larry and Turtleboy got off on the wrong foot. But as we kept following each other on social media Turtleboy began to respect Larry Kelley like none other. Because make no doubt about it – there was no more trusted person in the media than Larry Kelley. We used him as a source several times:
- Larry broke the news that the Youtube famous Bacon Jalapeno Mac n Cheese fuckboi from UConn was kicked out of UMass the year before after being arrested for calling an Amherst cop a racial slur. Larry went to his arraignment and posted the pics on his blog:
- We used his FB Live video and credited Larry for his coverage of these Amherst hippies who chained themselves to the TD Bank to protest the Dakota pipeline:
- We used Larry’s video from inside a Belchertown courtroom when the family of a slain man flipped out after the murderer was brought into the courtroom:
- But in our opinion the finest work Larry did since we began following him was his coverage of Hampshire College students who burned the American flag after the election, the school’s refusal to fly the American flag after that, and the protest put together by blue-blooded Americans who showed up en masse to show their patriotism.
Larry Kelley was much like Turtleboy. However, he was not crass like we are, and unlike Turtleboy he was not so much an opinion blogger as he was a reporter of facts. But, much like Turtleboy, Larry was everywhere:
And the taxpayers were always his biggest concern:
Sometimes he was witty and made you smile:
After he started using his magical Amherst drone he began to post amazing pictures of this beautiful part of the state:
That thing covered all the happenings around town, like the Amherst HS student walkout over the election:
Larry was a Mr. Feeney doppleganger and the true definition of a citizen patriot.
We were not aware until his passing that he was also a world class karate fighter:
Here he is fighting Billy Blanks, the world famous guy who makes those fitness videos your wife uses in the winter:
To see the type of imprint this man left you need look no further than the messages that are being left on his Facebook page:
Much like Turtleboy, Larry was often criticized by butthurts for “not being a real journalist.” But unlike Turtleboy he always handled criticism like this with civility, yet still accomplished the same thing of humiliating the butthurts:
More than anything, Larry was a human being. We are told that he was a father of two loving daughters. And we can’t imagine the pain they are feeling right now. I hope they read this so they know just how much he was valued by the community. No one from Turtleboy ever met Larry, but I wish we could’ve. More than anything I wish he could’ve read this so he could know how much we truly respected him as a journalist. This is a huge loss for his family and the Pioneer Valley in general. He will be missed.
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