Writing Clerical 06
Official Obituary of

Jean Bell

August 14, 1923 ~ March 30, 2024 (age 100) 100 Years Old

Jean Bell Obituary

On Easter Eve, March 30, 2024, Jean Bell peacefully went home to be with her Lord following a long and rewarding life.

Born (Sarah) Jean Tucker in Oxnard, CA, on August 14, 1923, to Tilden B. and Susie V. Tucker, Jean was the youngest of five children. After graduation from Oxnard High School, she attended secretarial school. Married in 1942 to Grady L. Bell, Jean visited her Army Air Corps husband across the United States whenever possible. In April 1943, their first daughter, Donna Jean, was born. At the close of WWII, Jean and her new family moved to Richmond, CA. There she worked for five years as an executive secretary at the H. J. Heinz Company, while Grady completed college and dental school.

Following Grady’s graduation in 1953, Jean and family settled in Hanford, CA, where Grady opened his new dental practice. Jean used her previous office experience to “balance the books” there each month. In December 1953, a second daughter, Debra Sue, was born. A third daughter, Lori Anne, came along in July 1959. Throughout this time, the growing family lived on Colonial Drive near the “Short Acres” section of Hanford.

In 1960, after daughter Donna graduated from Hanford High School, the decision was made to move to a country property on Grangeville Boulevard, where Jean and Grady built a new home and horse property. Jean then began chauffeuring a weekly trip into town for her daughters’ piano lessons, bill paying, grocery shopping and a hamburger dinner from Dari-Delite. In April 1963, the fourth and final daughter, Kristi Lynn, was born. This meant Jean’s oldest and youngest were born 20 years apart, to the month.

Jean dedicated much of her life to the raising of her four daughters. She was always there to help with school projects, even when left late near their deadlines. Thankfully, Jean would expertly type up school papers when begged. She served in various capacities within the Kit Carson Mothers’ Club, including president. The annual Enchilada Dinner club fundraiser found Jean stirring large vats of sauce and rolling up the filling in tortillas. As her daughters grew older, Jean found time to participate in more outside activities such as La Casa Garden Club, 19th Century Round Table Study Group, hostess at the Hanford Victorian Inn, AGAPE and to even act in a production of Hanford’s Kings Players.

The decision was made in 1968 to sell out the country place and return to town. The new Bell home was on Carter Circle in the (then) north edge of town. Jean continued to support her three daughters remaining at home. Often, she could be found driving them to school, especially Hanford High, when they were running late. Jean was a wise mother in rearing her girls.  Her daughters were seldom told what they had to do, but mostly left to make their own decisions, based on the solid foundation of their raising.

Shortly after moving to Hanford, the Bells found a church home at the First Presbyterian Church. Throughout her lifetime, Jean was involved in the activities there including choir, women’s groups, and Bible Studies. Many of her closest friendships developed with ladies from the church.

In later years, Jean and Grady made the decision to move to Palm Village Retirement Community in Reedley, where Grady preceded her in death in 2012. The staff there lovingly cared for Jean until the time of her passing. She is survived by her four daughters - Donna Gates, Debbie Weikle (Russell), Lori Porter (Doug) and Kristi Bell, six grandchildren – Chris Gates, Erin Gates (Pierre), Robert Weikle, Josh Weikle, John Borba (Elizabeth), Mathew Borba and one great-grandchild – Charlotte Borba. All of the above shared the pleasure of celebrating Jean Bell’s 100th birthday in August of 2023.

To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Jean Bell, please visit our floral store.

Friends and family have shared their relationship to show their support.
How do you know Jean Bell?
We are sorry for your loss.
Help others honor Jean's memory.


Funeral Service
April 6, 2024

11:00 AM
First Presbyterian Church
340 N. Irwin St
Hanford, CA 93230

Please note
In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the First Presbyterian Church, 340 N. Irwin St, Hanford, CA 93230.

© 2024 Whitehurst McNamara Funeral Service. All Rights Reserved. Funeral Home website by CFS & TA | Terms of Use | Privacy Policy | Accessibility