BELL, Carney Rickman Age 79 of Springfield, TN, passed away Tuesday, February 19, 2013. Funeral services will be conducted Friday, February 22nd at 11 a.m., at the First United Methodist Church in Springfield, TN, with Rev. Jeff Fryer, Dick Moore and Charlie Brinkley officiating. Burial will follow in Bellwood Cemetery in Adams, TN, with Wilson Sims, Jr., Bruce Moore, Jr., Tyler C. Moore, Mitchell R. Moore, James "Davis" Rolfe, Jr., Nicholas T. Rolfe, Richard H. Rolfe serving as Pallbearers. The family will receive friends at Austin & Bell Funeral Home in Springfield on Thursday from 3-8 p.m., and on Friday at the church from 10 a.m. till the hour of service. Carney was born October 9, 1933 in Nashville to the late Robert Henry and Margaret Rickman Bell. He enjoyed laughter, much of the time at the expense of others, through his practical jokes. His passions in life were his family, flying, and his farm. He was a member of the First United Methodist Church in Springfield, where he served on the Board. He was past Commander of The American Legion Post 48, Past President of the Springfield Kiwanis Club, 32nd Degree Mason and Shriner, organizer and the first Chairman of the Robertson County Airport Committee, member of the Kentucky and Tennessee Funeral Directors Association, and the Gideon's International, former board member of John A. Gupton College, Past President of the American Cancer Society of Springfield, Past President of the Springfield Chamber of Commerce, Chairman of the Bellwood Cemetery and the Bell-Willett Charitable Foundation. Carney, affectionately known by his family as "Pop", grew up in Springfield and loved Robertson County, where he spent much of his time at the "Bell Bottom Farm", his family farm in Cedar Hill. He graduated from Springfield High School and Tennessee Tech in Cookeville, TN. He then joined the United States Navy and was commissioned as an officer, awarded his wings and proudly served as a Naval Aviator. After his tour of duty, Carney remained in the active Naval Reserve for 20 years, and retired as a Commander. During this time, Pop often shared his lifelong passion by flying his fighter jet, the A4 Skyhawk, as low as possible over the city of Springfield, of which stories are legendary. After the death of his father, he returned to Springfield and served with the late Tom Austin, as owner and operator of Austin & Bell Funeral Homes, becoming sole owner after Mr. Austin's death. He was a licensed Funeral Director and Embalmer. He continued working at Austin and Bell until his retirement in 2009. For the remainder of his life, the "Bell Bottom Farm" became the happy gathering place for the extended family, children, 14 grandchildren and their friends. Carney and Bonnie built a "dormitory" for the six children and grandchildren. Many an hour was spent by the fire known as the "pit of wisdom", sharing life, laughter and friends. In addition to his parents, he is preceded in death by his brother, Robert H. Bell, Jr. He is survived by his wife, Bonnie Lynne Davis Bell; his sister, Linda Bell (Woody) Sims of Nashville; sons, Robert H. (Mary Lee) Bell III of Springfield, John M. (Vanessa) Rolfe, Jr. of Nashville, James D. (Mary K.) Rolfe, Sr. of Dallas, TX, Richard T. (Michelle) Rolfe of Franklin, TN; daughters, Karen Bell (Bruce) Moore of Nashville, Sperry Bell Stadler of Nashville; grandchildren, Tyler Moore, Blake Stadler, Margaret Anne Moore, Mary Briley Bell, Mitchell Moore, Davis Rolfe, Quinn Rolfe, Anne Rickman Bell, Becca Rolfe, Nicholas Rolfe, Richard Rolfe, Jenna Rolfe, Campbell Rolfe and Analeese Bell. We would like to give a special thanks for the extraordinary care provided to our family by the loving staff at the Blakeford. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the Vanderbilt LifeFlight or Nashville Rescue Mission. All donations may be sent in care of AUSTIN BELL FUNERAL HOME - Springfield, TN (615)384-1000.
Austin & Bell Funeral Home Springfield - Springfield
509 Walnut St.
Springfield, TN 37172
Published in The Tennessean on Feb. 21, 2013