Richard L. Bell / Sept. 11, 1943-Jan. 6, 2010

Published 10:22am Thursday, January 7, 2010

Richard Lee Bell, 66, of Dowagiac, passed away at 1:04 a.m. Wednesday, Jan. 6, 2010, at his home.

Richard’s life began on Sept. 11, 1943, in Dowagiac, the son of Ward L. Bell and Betty (Mott) Bell Wenger.

He served his country proudly in the U.S. Navy from 1960 until 1964 as a boatswain’s mate on the USS Delta.

He was formerly employed by Dowagiac Steel Tank and later by K&M Machine Fabricating in Cassopolis, retiring in 1990.

Richard was a member of Dowagiac Moose Lodge 933 since 1975.

He was united in marriage to Eunice (Hartzell) Keesler on Dec. 31, 1980, at First Christian Church in Dowagiac.

His loving family includes: his wife, Eunice Bell of Dowagiac; stepfather, Kenneth Wenger of Dowagiac; children, Jason (Kerri) Bell of Kansas City, Mo., and Robert (Lynley) Bell of Port St. Lucie, Fla.; step-children, Denise (Dennis) Juday of Dowagiac and Daryl (Valerie) Keesler of Dowagiac; grandchildren, Jeremy and Jordan Juday, Madalyn Bell, Stefeni Tormanen and Alexis Keesler; sisters, Kathy (Ted) Hoekstra of Dowagiac, Sherri (Craig) Pollock of Decatur, Lisa (James) Padgett of Lakeland, Fla., and Sharon (Lloyd) Tabbert of Clearwater, Fla.; and step-brother, Willie (Jackie) McCraner of Niles.

He is preceded in death by: his parents, Ward Bell and Betty Wenger; and brothers, Robert Wenger, Kevin Wenger and David Wenger.

Family and friends will gather between 1 and 3 p.m. on Saturday, Jan. 9, at Yazel and Clark Chapel with funeral services led by the Rev. Brian Hall of First Presbyterian Church of Decatur immediately following visitation.

Memorial contributions in his name may be directed to Hospice Care of Southwest Michigan.

Family and friends are encouraged to share a memory of Richard by signing his memory book at

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