WESTFIELD, NJ — Westfield mourns today as residents here learn that Fire Chief Daniel Kelly has died at the age of 54. Mayor Andy Skibitsky gave TAP into Westfield the following statement:
“I have had the privilege of working with Chief Dan Kelly for almost 10 years to the day. The words ‘consummate professional and career public servant’ do not do him justice. Dan was much, much more than that.
“Westfield is Chief Kelly’s hometown, and it was obvious to anyone who came in contact with him that he loved the town, he loved working for the town, and he loved the professional fire service. As he went about his day to day responsibilities, he strongly believed in, and more importantly, demonstrated, the traditional values of honor, respect, ethics, protocol, dignity and pride. I would like to say he demonstrated these values when he was both on duty and off duty, except that Chief Kelly was never really ‘off duty’ - he worked tirelessly and was available 24/7 not only to tend to the needs of the town and the fire service, but to offer whatever assistance and professional expertise he could to me, to my colleagues on the town council, and to all of his fellow co-workers. His dedication to duty was boundless, especially during natural disasters when, as OEM Coordinator, he worked for 24, 48, 72 hours straight – whatever it took - with the county, state and federal officials to make sure Westfield was served to the maximum extent possible.
“Make no mistake, though he rose through the ranks and earned the title of ‘Fire Chief,’ professionally he was first and foremost a firefighter. As such, he vigorously advocated for those under his command and for all those who dedicated themselves to the fire service.
“The passing of Chief Dan Kelly is a tremendous loss to our community. He will be missed. We will forever be grateful for his nearly 34 years of exceptional service to the town of Westfield. On behalf of the town council and the townspeople he valued serving so much, we offer our collective heartfelt condolences to Chief Kelly’s family.”