John F. Kelly facts for kids

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John F. Kelly
John Kelly official DHS portrait.jpg
28th White House Chief of Staff
Assumed office
July 31, 2017
President Donald Trump
Deputy Joe Hagin
Rick Dearborn
Kirstjen Nielsen
Chris Liddell
Bill Shine
Preceded by Reince Priebus
5th United States Secretary of Homeland Security
In office
January 20, 2017 – July 31, 2017
President Donald Trump
Deputy Elaine Duke
Preceded by Jeh Johnson
Succeeded by Kirstjen Nielsen
Commander of United States Southern Command
In office
November 19, 2012 – January 16, 2016
President Barack Obama
Preceded by Douglas M. Fraser
Succeeded by Kurt W. Tidd
Personal details
Born
John Francis Kelly

May 11, 1950 (1950-05-11) (age 69)
Boston, Massachusetts, U.S.
Nationality American
Spouse(s) Karen Hernest
Children 3
Education University of Massachusetts Boston (BA)
Georgetown University (MA)
National Defense University (MS)
Net worth $4 million
Military service
Allegiance  United States
Branch/service United States Marines
Years of service 1970–1972
1972–1975 (inactive reserves)
1975–2016
Rank General
Commands United States Southern Command
1st Light Armored Reconnaissance Battalion
Multinational Force West
Battles/wars
Awards Defense Distinguished Service Medal
Defense Superior Service Medal
Legion of Merit (2) with Combat "V"
Meritorious Service Medal (2)

John Francis Kelly (born May 11, 1950) is a retired United States Marine Corps general who is the current White House Chief of Staff for President Donald Trump, since July 31, 2017. He had previously served as Secretary of Homeland Security in the same administration.

Before entering the Trump administration, Kelly had been the commander of United States Southern Command, the unified combatant command responsible for American military operations in Central America, South America, and the Caribbean. He had previously served as the commanding general of the Multi-National Force West in Iraq from February 2008 to February 2009, and as the commander of Marine Forces Reserve and Marine Forces North in October 2009. Kelly succeeded General Douglas M. Fraser as commander of U.S. Southern Command on November 19, 2012 and was in turn succeeded by Navy Admiral Kurt W. Tidd on January 14, 2016.

Kelly was appointed Secretary of Homeland Security on January 20, 2017, by President Trump. On July 28, 2017, he was appointed to replace Reince Priebus as White House Chief of Staff, taking office on July 31, 2017 shortly after Priebus had officially left his post. At six months, Kelly's term as Secretary of Homeland Security is the briefest in the office's relatively short history.

Personal life

Kelly has been married to Karen Hernest since 1976. They raised three children together: Robert, John Jr., and Kathleen.

On November 9, 2010, Kelly's 29-year-old son, First Lieutenant Robert Michael Kelly, was killed in action when he stepped on a landmine while leading a platoon of Marines on a patrol in Sangin, Afghanistan. The younger Kelly was a former enlisted Marine and was on his third combat tour, his first combat tour as a U.S. Marine Corps infantry officer. At the time of his death, Robert Kelly was with Lima Company, 3rd Battalion, 5th Marines. Robert Kelly's death made John Kelly the highest-ranking American military officer to lose a child in Iraq or Afghanistan. Kelly's other son is a Marine Corps major.

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