“….On January, 10, 2021, as the cold rains fell in Leon County, Texas, the chopping sounds of an Army helicopter landing were heard as Jerry Bell, age 77, Sergeant Major, U.S. Army Retired, deployed to Heaven’s shore.” (Cecil Bell, Jr.)
Jerry Lynn Bell was born May 2, 1943 in the Russell Community of northern Leon County, Texas to William Ernest & Mary Adeline (Johnson) Bell. He enlisted in the U.S. Army at the age of seventeen and retired as a Sergeant Major. He served during the Vietnam War as a tanker and helicopter gunner earning numerous commendations and proving himself a true American Hero. Jerry’s nephew, Cecil Bell, Jr., describes him as a true warrior who fought with valor and distinction. Jerry’s service took him to places all over the world including Alaska and Germany. When he came home to Leon County, Jerry worked for B-5 Construction, the U.S. Postal Service and was the owner and operator of Bell Alley Gun Shop where he spent his days doing what he loved most, selling guns and working as a gunsmith while sharing his thoughts on conservatism, 2nd Amendment rights, religion and anything else he felt the need to share.
Jerry’s proud military career comes second only to the legacy he leaves behind as a man who placed God first in his life, a man who held a deep love for his country and state, and a man who was a devoted husband, father, grandfather and great-grandfather. Jerry’s favorite times were the Bell family reunions and Christmas parties at his home in Leona. These gatherings were widely talked about and enjoyed by the entire community as photos shared by the Bell family members were posted on social media, making all who viewed feel as if they, too, were a part of the already large, tight-knit family.
Jerry was preceded in death by both of his parents; brothers, Wendell, Weldon, Frank, Cecil, Wallace Ray and Roy Bell and sisters, Mayme Pearl Ellis Brown and Eva Ruth Roccaforte. His surviving family members include wife, Alice Cothron Bell of Leona; sons, Jerry Lynn (Terry) Bell, Jr. of Cypress and Harold “Dewayne” (LaKeitha) Bell of Centerville; daughters, Kimberly Michelle (Steven) Payne of Centerville and Wendy Rachelle (Edward) Baldwin of Centerville; sister, Mary Jo McMillan of Centerville; grandchildren, Brad, Brock, Brice, Joshua, Ryan, Blake, Aly, Tracer and Joey and eight great-grandchildren, as well as a host of nieces, nephews, cousins and extended family members.
Funeral services for Jerry were held 10 A.M., Thursday, January 14, 2021 at Walters Funeral Home, Centerville, Texas. Stuart Carter officiated the service, assisted by Cecil Bell, Jr. and James Nash. Jerry was laid to rest in Parker Cemetery in the Flo Community of Leon County, Texas. Military funeral honors were rendered by the U.S. Army.
Pallbearers: Brad Bell, Brock Bell, Brice Bell, Joshua Payne, Ryan Payne, Blake Payne, Tracer Bell, Joey Baldwin, Ernie Bell
In lieu of flowers, please consider memorial donations to the Parker Cemetery Association.
Final arrangements were in the care of Walters Funeral Home, Centerville, Texas.