Kenneth Don Bell was called from labor to rest on Monday, January 8, 2018. He was born in Chattanooga on July 25, 1927 to Elmer Underwood Bell and Willie Ruth Irwin Bell and grew up in Fairmount on Signal Mountain. At the age of 16, Ken joined The U. S. Merchant Marines and after Boot Training and Communications School in New York, he served aboard T2 Tankers hauling Aviation Gasoline to both the European and Pacific theaters. At the age of 18, Ken returned to Central High School to complete his education. He was immediately drafted and spent the next 20 years in the U. S. Army. His service took him to China, Korea (twice), Japan, Asmara, Eritrea, Ethiopia and Germany. He retired on January 1st, 1964.
Ken was immediately employed by the National Security Agency at Fort George G. Meade, Maryland and spent the next 19 years traveling all over the world in performing his duties. He retired in June 1983.
After retiring the second time, he and his beloved childhood sweetheart and late wife, Doris Underwood Bell of 64 years, returned home to what is now The Town of Walden. Ken became involved in real estate and served as the Owner/Broker of Diversified Inc., Realtors for 28 years. He also became involved in local politics and served The Town of Walden two years as Alderman and four years as Mayor. He is primarily remembered for doubling the size of Walden, the ordinance requiring two acre minimum lot size for future development, and the construction of the Pumpkin Patch Playground. He also served his community as Chairman of the Board for the Bachman Community Center and was pleased to see it being maintained as a community land mark and contribution to the late Senator Bachman.
Ken was a graduate of Central High School, The University of Maryland and the Industrial College of the Armed Forces.
He is a Past Master of Odenton Lodge #209 AF&AM, Odenton, Maryland. Past Patron of the Eastern Star, Past President of National Sojourners, Fort George G. Meada, Maryland Chapter, Past Commander of the Heros of the 76 and currently holds membership in these organizations. Ken is also a 32nd Degree Mason in the Scottish Rite.
Ken was preceded in death by his parents, Elmer and Willie Ruth Bell; his brother, Bobby J. Bell; and loving and devoted wife of 64 years, Doris Underwood Bell.
Survivors include his special friend, Janet Kay McBee and her two children and five grandchildren; his brother, Nickey Bell of Savannah, Georgia; son, Kenneth Underwood Bell and his wife, Susan, and his two granddaughters, Alice and Ann Bell; his daughter, Dona Lynn Bell; two granddaughters, Jennifer Bower and her husband, Kevin, and Stephanie Peters (Jody); and great-granddaughter, Wendy Rose Bower.
The family will receive friends 4:00-6:00 pm Saturday at Lane Funeral Home, Ashland Terrace. Funeral services will be 6:00 pm Saturday at Lane Funeral Home, Ashland Terrace. Burial will be in Arlington National Cemetery at a later date.
In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to Wayside Presbyterian Church, Signal Mountain, TN 37377 or a charity of your choice.
Arrangements are by Lane Funeral Home, Ashland Terrace, www.lanefh.com, 877-3524.