On Sunday, June 23, 2013, at 9:30 p.m., our father opened his arms to welcome Jimmie Lee Bell home. Bell was born Dec. 30, 1950, in Forest City, Ark. He served his country honorably in the U.S. Army and was a Vietnam veteran.
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Bell first came to Alaska when he was stationed at Fort Wainwright. He decided to make Alaska his home when his service was completed.
Bell's hobbies included fishing, hunting, boating, snowmachining and most of all, his music. Bell could play the piano and the horn and had fun playing in bands. He also worked as a professional cook for years.
Bell will be missed by so many; he was fun and full of life. When you were down, Bell would be there to pick you up. No matter how much you would fuss and argue with him, he was right back at your door the next day. When he was a friend, he was a friend for real. He will always be loved and missed.
His family said, "Pappa Bell was a loving grandfather and was always willing to help out others. He had a great sense of humor. He loved to cook and create delicious dishes for his church potlucks."
Bell is survived by his loving wife, Elaine Richards, of North Pole; son, Fred Matheson, of Fairbanks; granddaughters, Kalila Matheson, Kiana Edwards, Kenya Edwards, all of Fairbanks; grandsons, Fred Matheson, Jr., Malachi Matheson, Noah Matheson, and David Lee Edwards, all of Fairbanks; his dad, Robert Bell, and brother, Archie Bell, both of Memphis, Tenn.; daughter-in-law, Maggie Matheson, of Fairbanks; two godchildren, Nicole and Donnell; best friends, J.R., Shirley, and Donnie; and many more relatives and friends.
Bell was preceded in death by his brother, Arnold "Squeaky" Bell.
Visitation will start at
2 p.m. and funeral services begin at 3 p.m. Sunday, June 30, 2013, at Spoken Word Tabernacle, 2376 Badger Road, North Pole. Burial will be at Fort Richardson National Cemetery, Fort Richardson, Anchorage.
Memorial donations made be made to the family through Chapel of Chimes, 415 Illinois Street, Fairbanks, AK 99701.
Arrangements are entrusted to Chapel of Chimes.
Published in Daily News-Miner on June 27, 2013