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Olive Joslin Bell


Wasilla resident Olive J. Bell, died Feb. 24, 2003, at Valley Hospital after reaching the end of her path. A celebration of life will be held May 17 at the Wasilla Area Senior Center.

Mrs. Bell was born April 17, 1915, in Yakima, Wash. She graduated from high school in Milford, N.H., attended business college in Pomona, Calif. and Scripts College in Claremont, Calif. She worked for the United States Space Program at Vandenberg, A.F.B. from 1962-1967. She came to Alaska in the fall of 1969. She worked as a reporter and editor for the Alaskana Newspaper from 1969-1973 and as an editor for the Artic Sun from 1973-1984.

She also endeavored to get the gas line in place for Alaska OMAR.

Mrs. Bell lived in Palmer from 1985-1994, then moved to Wasilla where she worked for Wal-Mart as a greeter from 1995-1997.

She was a member of the Wasilla Area Seniors and the Alaska Womens Writers Assoc. She received many awards and honors. Her latest honor occured when former governor Tony Knowles placed her poem "God and Alaska" in the legislative hall in Juneau. Her hobbies included writing, raising money for senior causes, guest speaking in the elementery schools and traveling. She went to Australia in 1996 and to Holland in 2001 to see the tulips. She couldn't find a traveling partner either time so it was just her and her wheelchair.

Her friends wrote "Olive was incredibly gracious and inclusive to all she met and came to know. She was never at a loss for conversation. She was ever ready to go up until the last few months, she had even made plans to go to Denmark. Those of us who knew her carry memories of wonderful gatherings with coffee, elegent surroundings and great conversation."

She was preceded in death by her husband of 20 years "Red" Bell; her parents Harry and Buelah and all of her siblings. She is survived by many close friends and acquaintances.

Memorial donations may be made to the Wasilla Area Seniors ( WASI), at 1301 Century Circle, Wasilla AK 99654.

Arrangements were made by Kehl's Palmer Mortuary.

Source: Frontiersman, 24 February 2003




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