South End Rowing Club
Inducted as Player in 1992
By Rudy Stadlberger
Tom Kelly grew up just a few blocks from the Golden Gate Park Handball Courts in San Francisco. In his teens he was playing open doubles with USHA hall of fame member Al Banuet and NCHA hall of fame member Dan Marble. In 1938 he joined the South End Rowing Club. Teaming with Joe Kukula he won several club championships and other local tournaments. Handball stopped for Tom during the war years. In 1946 he joined The Olympic Club and teamed with Bob McGuire to win The Olympic Club doubles tournament. They won every local tournament they entered.
Tom stopped playing tournaments around 1949 and returned to the Golden Gate Park Courts as a casual player. In 1973 he was recruited by Rudy Stadlberger to train for the 50+ division of the nationals. In 1973 they won the masters doubles (40+) in Fresno, at The Olympic Club, Golden Gate Park and the South End Rowing Club. Tom and Rudy also won the nationals in 1974 and took second place in 1975. Tom placed second in the Nationals (40+) in 1976.
Tom put in 35 years with the San Francisco Fire Department and retired as a Battalion Chief.