William “Bill” Bell, artist, musician, educator, and great lover of life, passed peacefully and was reunited with his family and friends on April 3, 2021.
Born on March 26, 1943 in Lawrence, MA, Bill’s youth was spent on the streets of Tower Hill in Lawrence, where he and his friends kept the sisters of St. Augustine’s Grammar school on their toes.
As a graduate of Central Catholic High School, Class of 1960, Bill developed lifelong friendships and was a driving force in the school’s 1960 championship basketball team. During a six-year Navy career, which included Nuclear Sub School, he spent time on the submarines USS Grouper and Razorback, and the aircraft carrier, the Ticonderoga. He received the National Service Medal, the Vietnam Service Medal, and Two Bronze Stars.
A creative spirit, Bill graduated from UMass-Boston with a degree in Art and, with his unique insight into life, art, and music, went on to a long career impacting many students’ lives as an educator at Hanover Public Schools. He loved his students and his students loved him, showing their respect and appreciation by continuing to keep in touch throughout the years. While at Hanover, Bill also coached Cross Country and helped the team earn a state championship. One of Bill’s student athletes wrote, “Bill’s gift was disarming kids with a joke, and then subtly working in praise for a gift they very likely didn’t know they had. RIP Bill Bell: Planter of Seeds.” He continued his lifelong learning with a Masters in Studio Art and his CAGS at Bridgewater State College. A member of the Plymouth Art Guild, he won many awards at art shows in Composition, Sculpture, and Calligraphy.
A lover of Irish culture, Bill embraced his passion for Celtic music and brought joy to his audiences while creating lifelong friendships singing and playing his guitar, his Celtic “bodhrain” drum, and his tin whistle at Irish Seisiuns throughout the South Shore area. Some of the venues included Sean O’Tooles, McGuiggins in Whitman, and Lucioso’s in Plymouth. He was a member of the Ancient Order of Hibernians, Father Murphy Division 9 of Plymouth, and always enjoyed playing on the Annual Onset AOH Fundraiser cruises.
Bill’s daughter Dylan Marie, gave him the greatest joy of his life. He lit up in her company, showing his pride and love. The special bond they had comforted him right up to his last day. His Siberian Huskie, Wilee, his constant companion, was always by his side. A wonderful brother, father and friend, Bill’s passing leaves a painful hole in the hearts of those who knew him.
The family would like to express their heartfelt gratitude to all the staff at Boston Medical Center especially, Bill’s nurses and Dr. “Al” Nadjarian, and Dr. Pak.
Bill is survived by his daughter, Dylan Marie Bell; sister, Lisa Bell and her husband Keith Andrews; ex-wife, Debbie; step-daughter, Tracy Biondo; his grandchildren, Livvia and Anthony. He was predeceased by his sister, Mary Ellen Bell Cusak and her husband Thomas Cusak and his brother Arthur “Vinnie” Bell.
In lieu of flowers donations in Bill’s memory can be made to the A.L.S. Family Charitable Foundation, One Trowbridge Road, Suite 322, Bourne, MA 02532.
Relatives and friends are respectfully invited to attend visiting hours on Friday, April 9, 2021, from 4:00-7:00 PM at Cataudella Funeral Home, 126 Pleasant Valley Street in Methuen. His funeral mass will be held at 12:00 PM on Saturday, April 10, 2021, at Our Lady of Good Counsel at St. Theresa Church, 22 Plymouth Street in Methuen. Burial will be Monday, April 12, 2021 at 1:15 PM at Bourne National Cemetery in Bourne, MA.
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