Johnson County

Lt. Russell Bell

 

 

Lone Tree:
Russell Bell, who finished his training at the army pre-flight school at Phoenix, Ariz., June 17, has been transferred to Tuscon, Ariz., for his basic training. His address is Training Squadron 7, Marane Army Flying School, Tuscon, Ariz.

Source: Muscatine Journal and News-Tribune, July 10, 1943

Mrs. Bell in Florida.
Mrs. James Bell has gone to Sarasota, Fla., to visit her son, Lt. Russell Bell, who is in the army air force training there.

Source: Muscatine Journal and News-Tribune, February 12, 1944

Lieut. Bell, Lone Tree, Army Plane Pilot, Missing

Lone Tree—Lieut. Russell Bell has been reported as missing in action somewhere in Italy on May 21, according to a telegram received from the War Department Saturday night by his parents, Mr. and Mrs. James Bell, of near Lone Tree.

Lieut. Bell is a fighter pilot with the army air corps, and went overseas in early March of this year. He was on his fifteenth mission when his plane failed to return.

The last letter relatives received from him was dated May 20.

Lieut. Bell received his commission as second lieutenant at a Texas airfield, and took advanced training in Florida before going overseas. He was a graduate of Lone Tree high school with the Class of 1939.

Source: Muscatine Journal and News-Tribune, June 14, 1944

OFFICIAL RECORD REPORTS TWO ON MISSING LISTS

Two men from the Muscatine area where officially reported by the War Department as missing in action, the Associated Press announced today in a message from Washington.

They are Sgt. Donald G. Kopf, Muscatine, missing in the European area, and Second Lt. Russell J. Bell, Nichols, in the Mediterranean theater. Staff Sgt. John J. Chuck, Brighton, was also reported missing in the European area.

Source: Muscatine Journal and News-Tribune, July 10, 1944

LIST OF MISSING IN ACTION GREW IN 1944
Among those from this area who have been listed as missing in action in official dispatches to next of kin, and upon casualty lists of the armed services, are: 

LT. RUSSELL BELL—A telegram to his parents, Mr. and Mrs. James Bell of near Lone Tree, advised that their son, Lt. Russell Bell, had been missing in action since May 21, 1944, in Italy.  He was a fighter pilot and went overseas early in March of this year. He was on his fifteenth mission when his plane failed to return.

Source: Muscatine Journal and News-Tribune, Friday, December 29, 1944

Lieut. Bell Is Given Air Medal, Parents Learn

Lone Tree—Lieut. Russell Bell, son of Mr. and Mrs. James Bell, who has been missing in action with the army air corps in Italy since May 21, 1944, has been cited to receive the Air Medal, according to word received by his parents.

Lieut. Bell was cited for performance of a mission May 20, 1944, in Italy, by fighters and bombers. It notes that he blocked a road expertly with bomb craters and drove through intense anti-aircraft fire to strafe enemy concentrations, inflicting heavy damage and silencing three enemy gun positions.

A letter from the adjutant general’s office advised the parents that the Air Medal was being sent to the commanding officer of the Seventh Service command at Omaha, and that an officer from that station would make the presentation to Mr. and Mrs. Bell.

Source: Muscatine Journal and News-Tribune, February 17, 1945

MRS. BELL LEAVES TO ACCEPT AWARD FOR HER SON
Lone Tree—Mrs. James H. Bell left Friday for St. Louis to receive the Air Medal awarded to Lt. Russell Bell. Arrangement for the presentation has been made by Lt. Malcom Levi, personnel officer at Rosecranz Field, St. Louis.

Lt. Bell, who has been missing in action in Italy since May 21, 1944, was awarded the Air Medal for meritorious service the preceding day, May 20. No later word of Lt. Bell has come since that time.

Source: Muscatine Journal and News-Tribune, March 10, 1945

BELL MEMORIAL SERVICE HELD AT LONE TREE

Lone Tree—Memorial services for Lieut. Russell Bell, who was officially reported as killed in action in Italy, May 21, 1944, were conducted at the Reformed church Sunday morning by the Rev. Wendell Hansen. Townsend Brown sang a vocal solo and other musical selections were by the girls’ sextet, accompanied by Marilyn Ziegler.

Source: Muscatine Journal and News-Tribune, April 17, 1945

More Details on Death of R. Bell, Heard By Parents

Lone Tree—Additional details on the death of Russell Bell, killed in action in Italy May 21, 1944, were brought to his parents, Mr. and Mrs. James Bell, recently. They were conveyed by Capt. _____, USAF, and Chaplain Hol____y, Capt., A. C. veterans of overseas service now stationed at an army air base at Madison, Wis., who also brought personal messages from Gen. Marshall, U.S. Army chief, and Gen. Arnold, head of the U.S. air forces.

Source: Muscatine Journal and News-Tribune, April 28, 1945

140 Have Made Supreme Sacrifice in Muscatine Area In War Against Axis Powers; Many Reported Wounded

Lt. Russell Bell, son of Mr. and Mrs. James Bell of near Lone Tree, killed in action May 21, 1944, somewhere in Italy.

Source: Muscatine Journal, Victory in Europe Edition, May 7, 1945