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Kelly Crane

A military brat, Kelly Crane spent most of her childhood abroad and felt culture shock when her father retired to Little Rock, Arkansas. "I finished high school early and came to Oregon," says Crane, who did return to Fayetteville for degrees in philosophy, but came back, settled here, waited tables at Mazzi's for years, earned a UO teaching credential and taught in Creswell. She was laid off, got married, and home-schooled her son Jesse through the 90s. "Giving back to the community has always been important to me," says Crane, who volunteered for years as an advocate for abused children and kids in foster care. With her son off to college and her marriage ending in 2006, Crane carpooled to Portland once a week for two years to complete an MSW from PSU. She was hired as a mental health therapist by Lookingglass, where she'd served a year as an intern. "I found my calling," she says. "Half my case load is juvenile sexual offenders. I also work with trauma victims." A 25-year volunteer at the Oregon Country Fair, Crane has coordinated the Teen Crew for 20 years. "It's an apprenticeship program for youth," she says. "They rotate to different crews and learn what it takes to put the fair on."

happening people

photograph and story by Paul Neevel

Eugene Weekly / 10 December 2009

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