On May 11th, a funeral mass at St. Patrick's Cathedral in Manhattan was held for long-time advertising executive John H. Bell who passed away May 8th in Saratoga Springs, New York after a long illness. In 1949, Mr. Bell began his storied advertising career with Sunset magazine. He then served as National Advertising Director for both This Week magazine and McCall's magazine. John Bell mentored many within the advertising industry. Possessed of boundless optimism and an indomitable spirit, he enriched the lives of all who knew him. From 1974 to 1981 he served as vice president of the Newspaper Advertising Bureau until his untimely retirement due to a catastrophic horseback riding accident.
Born in Manhattan on April 21, 1919 and raised in Brooklyn, Mr. Bell attended Xavier Academy, and later St. John's University where he earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Latin and Greek. His studies were interrupted by the second World War where he served as an officer in the combat engineers. He received a bronze star citation for valor and a Purple Heart during the battle of the Bulge. After the war, he resumed his studies at St. Johns where he earned a law degree.
A lifelong sportsman, Mr. Bell was a member of the New York Athletic club, the Boulder Brook Riding Club and Winged Foot Golf Club in Mamaroneck, New York. Mr. Bell was a resident of the Saratoga Hospital Nursing Home on D3 for the past 2 and a half years, where he re-taught us all the meaning of caring, selflessness, willpower, human dignity and the nobility of aspiring towards greatness. The Bell Family is deeply appreciative to the healthcare providers and staff at Saratoga Hospital.
He is predeceased by his wife Sally M. Bell and is survived by his sons Dr. Sean Bell of New Canaan, Connecticut and Dr. Lance Bell of Saratoga Springs, New York; his daughter Bonnie Silver of Bedford, New York; ten grand-children and eight great grand-children.
A wake will be held at the Fred W. Knapp Funeral Home in Greenwich, Connecticut on Wednesday, May 10th with visiting hours from 4pm - 8pm. A mass of Christian burial will be held Thursday May 11th at St. Patrick's Cathedral 14 East 51st Street New York at 10:30 a.m. followed by committal at St. Mary's Cemetery in Greenwich, Connecticut.