Smiles And Sunshine

RIP Larry Kelley: The Most Legendary Citizen Journalist Blogger In Massachusetts History And A Huge Loss To The Amherst Community

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.

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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.

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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:

Luke V. Gatti

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  • 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:

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  • 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.

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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:

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And the taxpayers were always his biggest concern:

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Sometimes he was witty and made you smile:

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After he started using his magical Amherst drone he began to post amazing pictures of this beautiful part of the state:

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That thing covered all the happenings around town, like the Amherst HS student walkout over the election:

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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:

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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:

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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:

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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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7 Comment(s)
  • EastWestKarate
    January 31, 2021 at 5:27 pm

    When I was young, I sparred with Larry on a regular basis as he was going through a divorce, and living at the Dojo. We would spar for hours at a time with no breaks. He taught me everything that is important when fighting. He treated me as an adult and didn’t hold back, and neither did I. He was a great influence in my life and a very good person. I’ll never forget the time we spent punching and kicking each other for hours.

  • Wabbitt
    February 18, 2017 at 4:40 pm

    I’ll pour one out for Larry tonight.


  • I melt snowflakes.
    February 18, 2017 at 3:02 pm

    I hate all these liberal “reporters” that say people like Larry Kelley and Turtleboy are not “real reporters”. They are threatened by the fact people are turning to bloggers and other sources for REAL NEWS. I am so sick and tired of watchin MSM reporting “News” all you get is either a story about a puppy who shits rainbows, men who think they are women not knowing what bathroom to use, black people being oppressed by white people with “white privileg”, somones feelings getting hut, how racist you are if you fly the American flag, a boat 30 miles from land, or how bad Trump is. I wanna know real news, find the Insurance scams, or the racist moccasin wearing politician from the Cape who wants our horrible police to take sensitivity training because black people are scared of them, or the Mayor of some city using people he can manipulate to do his dirty deeds. I could keep going but I think you get the idea. R.I.P LARRY KELLY YOU WILL BE MISSED. Turtleboy keep up the good work.

  • #askthehardquestions
    February 18, 2017 at 2:35 pm

    Thank you Turtle Boy ! Larry and I once talked about you and I think he said you guys hated each other with mutual respect ! I think you did an amazing tribute here..
    While no one ever agrees which everything Larry feels about his stories, he did the Amherst community a great service by asking the questions no one wanted to ask. He was courageous and forceful when taking up causes when people were just being treated wrong ! Especially School committee issues like Catherine Sanderson, and the Pelham Parent that got banned from school , the ousting of the former administration, water concerns at Fort River School, and the Current push in Amherst to spend more to get more from the state and a reconfiguration plan that many people don’t want. He didn’t just report about mafioso style politics of the school board he was a watchdog! Filing numerous Open Meeting Law complaints try to keep their behavior honest and in the public eye.
    More importantly Larry has two beautiful daughters that he loves very much. He was a great father always attended activities.. and sometimes when I would see him for example at the Amherst fair, I would ask him a question and he would say.. I promised my daughter the scanner is in the car tonight ! Amherst will need a courageous sole to step up and help keep this town to task.. Whomever that is has big shoes to fill ! God Bless his family in this very sad time !

  • RIP Larry
    February 18, 2017 at 1:58 pm

    Thank you Turtleboy for writing such a good article on a great man. He will truly be missed. He, much like Turtleboy, was my go to source for news when I was looking for a thoroughly researched news article. He did he best to show people the truth and shed light on things in hopes of making his community a better place. This is truly a major loss for the Amherst community. Prayer to you Larry.

  • Coffee
    February 18, 2017 at 1:53 pm

    Beautiful job turtleboy.

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