Royce joined his beautiful wife, Lillian, in heaven on September 21, 2020, when his faith became sight in the presence of his Lord and Savior. Born May 12, 1932, to Florence Susan Briscoe Bell and Ambrose W. Bell, Royce learned the value of hard work and the qualities of responsibility, loyalty, integrity and compassion from his parents. He served in the U.S. Army until the death of his dad brought him home to care for his family. He learned the meaning of sacrifice for others early in his life. He loved the Lord and served several churches in leadership positions, currently attending Franklin Baptist in Norman. He loved his church family who extended so much love and care to him over the past 9 years. Probably his favorite church position was as song leader. He and Lillian had a great love for southern gospel music and sang as Royce Bell and the Storie Sisters around the region in churches and at gospel singing conventions for many years. They raised their family to love and serve the Lord in church as well as in the community and extend that love to any who was in need. Royce owned and managed full-service service stations for many years. He retired from Jackson County as a heavy equipment operator, an occupation which he loved. Fishing, gardening, a beautiful yard and well maintained home and vehicles, woodworking, and reading were his hobbies. And as with all things he did, he accomplished those hobbies with excellence. Royce was a loving husband, dad, grandpa, great grandpa (Pa), and great great grandpa, son, and brother. He loved and served his family for whom his pride was always apparent. He was known to be kind and gentle. His character was above reproach.
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Royce was preceded in death by his wife of 64 years, parents, and two sisters, Nona Rue Bell Biddy and Emma Dean Bell. He is survived by his daughter, Pamela Bell Harrell and husband Kerry Harrell of Norman, his son, Derryl Bell and wife Tonya of Noble, 8 grandchildren, 10 great grandchildren, 6 great-great grandchildren, 4 sisters-in-law, 3 brothers-in-law, and many nieces and nephews, all of whom loved him deeply. Royce is much loved by so many friends and family he leaves behind.
In life, Royce’s loving care of Lillian in her final years made him an earthly hero to his family. Royce’s absence leaves a hole which will never be filled, but so many memories to which we will all cling until heaven reunites us. In death, he leaves a legacy only equaled by that of his wife. They were an inspiration to all who knew them. Their smiles and warm welcome lit up a room.
A memorial service will be planned for a future date. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in the name of Royce Bell to Franklin Baptist Church of Norman, 7327 E. Franklin Rd., Norman, OK 73026.