Kelly proudly served in the United States Navy from 1999 to 2003.
Kelly has four children. Her little boy was diagnosed with a form of brain cancer called medulloblastoma. He went through three years of chemotherapy and radiation. During that time, Kelly decided to use her GI bill for school and complete her bachelor’s degree in administration of justice. She later found out that her son was in remission but indeed had three other cancers that were aggressive. After some much needed surgery, Kelly and her little boy moved to the St. Louis area so they could be closer to hospital facilities. Her son was also diagnosed with a rare genetic disease, which was dismissed for many years because there are only two known African-American cases in the US. There is no treatment for Kelly’s son. He has scoliosis, brain cancer, bone cancer, and other genetic malformations caused by the disease. He constantly undergoes surgery to remove tumors that erode his bones.
Taking care of her son and dealing with his illness put a financial strain on Kelly. She was unable to work while caring for her son who often experienced severe pain. Kelly had no extended family for support during this time.
Songs4Soldiers helped Kelly and her family with rent to relieve some of the financial stress so Kelly could focus on her son.