Eddie Kelly is gone

wincardona

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Danny Diliberto called me and said that my good friend Eddie Kelly died last night. R.I.P. Eddie.

Bill Incardona
 

NH Steve

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Danny Diliberto called me and said that my good friend Eddie Kelly died last night. R.I.P. Eddie.

Bill Incardona
Damn what a shame! Many players of his era have commented that he was one of the best all around of his time. Rest In Peace champion, Ed Kelly :(
 

Mary Kenniston

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I'm so sorry to hear this. The following is a tribute I wrote & posted on Facebook:

The pool world has lost another legend - BCA & One Pocket Hall of Famer, Ed Kelly, at the age of 80.

Inducted into the BCA Hall of Fame in '03 & into the One Pocket Hall of Fame in '05, Kelly was known for his expertise in all games & his acerbic wit. "Champagne Eddie" stood tall among his peers - no one liked to walk up to a tournament chart & see that Kelly was their next match.

Starting with his runner-up finish to Luther Lassiter in the '63 Johnson City All-Round, he followed up with the '65 World 9 ball & the '67 World 9 Ball & One Pocket titles. In '69, he was crowned the L.A. Open World Pocket Billiard (14.1) Champion & in '71, he again won the One Pocket title and the elusive All-Around World Championship title at Johnston City.

I didn't know him until I moved to Las Vegas & opened my pool room,Cue-Topia. By that time, he was pretty much retired from competive pool & was dealing blackjack at the old Las Vegas Hilton. He'd stop by every day, grab a cup of coffee & hold court until it was time to head to work.

It was always a treat to hear him tell about his road days with Eddie Taylor, Ronnie Allen, Billy Incardona, Richie Florence & so many others.

In '93, when Grady Matthews announced his Legends of One Pocket event in Reno, we all tried to get Kelly to enter. He resisted but we insisted. Finally, he gave in & dusted off his cue a few days before the tournament was to begin.

Working his way through the field, he found himself in the finals with Billy Burge - the legendary Cornbread Red. It went down to the case ball in the case game & Eddie took it down. What a bookend to an illustrious forty year career - another legend from a by-gone era...

RIP, Kel, RIP...

Photos below are courtesy of OnePocket.org, Mary Kenniston & Robert Ross.
 

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gulfportdoc

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Good God. I hadn't realized that Eddie was sick. I'm very sorry to hear this.

Very nice tribute, Mary.

~Doc
 

mr3cushion

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Mary, a very insightful and honoring tribute to a GREAT all around player. Big Bob Ogburn thought Eddie was the BEST player in the country in the late 60's thru early 70's! I'm sure MANY others will agree.

R.I.P Eddie!
 

FastEddieF.

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First of all I want to thank Mary K. for the great tribute to Ed.Kelly.I met Eddie in 1958 at Kleins Poolroom I was 15 and he was 20 years old. He was teaching dancing lessons downstairs at Arthur Murrays Dance studio. He was also the house man at the poolroom. His Backers were Fat Earl Magid and Jerry Everhart.I remember going to Virginia on weekends and watching Ed. Taylor give lessons on Bank Pool to Eddie.What knowledge I learned from watching.I never saw anybody beat Ed.in Pool but I know he lost at least once. I think Ed. was from Connecticut.I know quite a few stories about Ed.He was a beautiful Pool Player, What great Form and the smoothest stroke I ever saw.I went to the Hall of Fame Dinner for him and Elfren Reyes in Las Vegas the year was 2003. what great memories I have from watching him shooting pool.He lived in Baltimore for 5 years.When I saw Eddie in Las Vegas he didn't recognize me .It was the first time seeing him in over 40 years. I was one of the lucky guys who knew him. A true LEGEND. R.I.P. Eddie Kelly
 

FastEddieF.

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First of all I want to thank Mary K. for the great tribute to Ed.Kelly.I met Eddie in 1958 at Kleins Poolroom I was 15 and he was 20 years old. He was teaching dancing lessons downstairs at Arthur Murrays Dance studio. He was also the house man at the poolroom. His Backers were Fat Earl Magid and Jerry Everhart.I remember going to Virginia on weekends and watching Ed. Taylor give lessons on Bank Pool to Eddie.What knowledge I learned from watching.I never saw anybody beat Ed.in Pool but I know he lost at least once. I think Ed. was from Connecticut.I know quite a few stories about Ed.He was a beautiful Pool Player, What great Form and the smoothest stroke I ever saw.I went to the Hall of Fame Dinner for him and Elfren Reyes in Las Vegas the year was 2003. what great memories I have from watching him shooting pool.He lived in Baltimore for 5 years.When I saw Eddie in Las Vegas he didn't recognize me .It was the first time seeing him in over 40 years. I was one of the lucky guys who knew him. A true LEGEND. R.I.P. Eddie Kelly
I'm a one finger typist so don't hold it against me.
 

Dennis "Whitey" Young

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Memories come flashing back of Kelly. I've heard of him dusting off his cue and winning the Reno OP, thanks Mary for the tribute, it makes you realize even more just how great a player he is. He stood out during an era that a bound with so many great players. RIP Ed Kelly.
 

Tom Wirth

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In '93, when Grady Matthews announced his Legends of One Pocket event in Reno, we all tried to get Kelly to enter. He resisted but we insisted. Finally, he gave in & dusted off his cue a few days before the tournament was to begin.

Working his way through the field, he found himself in the finals with Billy Burge - the legendary Cornbread Red. It went down to the case ball in the case game & Eddie took it down. What a bookend to an illustrious forty year career - another legend from a by-gone area...

RIP, Kel, RIP...

Photos below are courtesy of OnePocket.org, Mary Kenniston & Robert Ross.[/QUOTE]

Hi Mary, this is truly a sad day for the pool world.

I was there for this tournament in Reno. It was played on tables I had never seen before or since. Maybe those of you on the west coast know of these tables. "Global" as I remember.

AS for Eddie, I do remember vividly that he was constantly able to find dead balls within the stack. I recall one such shot where the dead ball was surrounded by a host of other balls. The obstructing balls cleared away like Moses' opening of the Red sea. "Let my object ball go!" Like magic, balls scattered in various directions while a single ball slowly trickled forward from the middle of the stack and on a direct line into his pocket.

If you were there to witness this shot you would have had no doubt that it was planned from the start. Ed Kelly had numerous attributes for pool but the two which impressed me most were his ability to analyze clearly what he was looking at and his willingness to firmly believe in his analysis enough to pull the trigger. The man had heart!

In my opinion there was no one who possessed the ability to find obscure caroms out of clusters better that this man.

The pool world will forever miss Ed Kelly. We must never forget his unique and brilliant contributions to the game of pool.

RIP Mr. Kelly.

Tom
 

vapros

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Ouch, another one gone - they are getting scarce. Did anyone ever do an interview with Eddie Kelly? I never got to see him play.
 

JAM

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I'm so sorry to hear this. The following is a tribute I wrote & posted on Facebook:

The pool world has lost another legend - BCA & One Pocket Hall of Famer, Ed Kelly, at the age of 80.

Inducted into the BCA Hall of Fame in '03 & into the One Pocket Hall of Fame in '05, Kelly was known for his expertise in all games & his acerbic wit. "Champagne Eddie" stood tall among his peers - no one liked to walk up to a tournament chart & see that Kelly was their next match.

Starting with his runner-up finish to Luther Lassiter in the '63 Johnson City All-Round, he followed up with the '65 World 9 ball & the '67 World 9 Ball & One Pocket titles. In '69, he was crowned the L.A. Open World Pocket Billiard (14.1) Champion & in '71, he again won the One Pocket title and the elusive All-Around World Championship title at Johnston City.

I didn't know him until I moved to Las Vegas & opened my pool room,Cue-Topia. By that time, he was pretty much retired from competive pool & was dealing blackjack at the old Las Vegas Hilton. He'd stop by every day, grab a cup of coffee & hold court until it was time to head to work.

It was always a treat to hear him tell about his road days with Eddie Taylor, Ronnie Allen, Billy Incardona, Richie Florence & so many others.

In '93, when Grady Matthews announced his Legends of One Pocket event in Reno, we all tried to get Kelly to enter. He resisted but we insisted. Finally, he gave in & dusted off his cue a few days before the tournament was to begin.

Working his way through the field, he found himself in the finals with Billy Burge - the legendary Cornbread Red. It went down to the case ball in the case game & Eddie took it down. What a bookend to an illustrious forty year career - another legend from a by-gone area...

RIP, Kel, RIP...

Photos below are courtesy of OnePocket.org, Mary Kenniston & Robert Ross.
Beautiful read, Mary! I enjoyed it, though it is sad to wake up to this news.

Keith will be devastated when he wakes up to learn of his passing.

I only met him for the first time in Orlando at the IPT King of the Hill. Keith and he were both cutting up about memories they shared, and I was in awe, just listening to the two of them.

I must say my first reaction upon meeting him was how handsome he was and debonnaire. He said he was dealing cards at a casino in Las Vegas. He was so polite to me and seemed to always be brandishing a smile on his face.

May he rest in eternal peace.
 

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bstroud

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Very sad news. Eddie and I go back a long way.

I agree with Big Bob. He was certainly the Best one pocket player I ever played.

Bill S.
 

wincardona

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Eddie was my mentor he taught me how to play one pocket the right way, he was a special player/person. I first saw Kelly play pool in 1963 in Atlantic City he was playing one pocket with a black player I believe his name was Marvin. Kelly was playing him two blocks of 5 to Marvins eight which was a huge spot. I was in awe of Kelly as he walked around the table, dressed to the max with an Italian nit sweater, mohair slacks, and Alligator shoes, he was what I wanted to be. He played pool like Liberace played the piano, never seeming to miss a beat, he was a beautiful player to watch play. We became close friends later in life, both living in LasVegas where we played one another at my home it was a treat and a great learning experience. We shared many things in life we went on the road together, ate dinner together a countless number of times and argued with one another again, a countless number of times. he was a good friend and a better person. R.I.P. my friend

Bill Incardona
 
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Tom Wirth

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Billy, I envy your time with Ed. I would have savored those memories in the same way I know you savor them.

Tom
 
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