Cover photo for Ralph "Mack" Bell's Obituary
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2017 Ralph 2017

Ralph "Mack" Bell

February 28, 2017 — May 20, 2017

Ralph Mack Bell (February 28, 1944 – May 20, 2017) Ralph Mack Bell, age 73, passed away peacefully at home on May 20, 2017. Mack was born in Tucumcari, NM on February 28, 1944 to Ralph and Faye (Maben) Bell. Mack and older sister, Dixie, were in junior high when the family moved to Santiago, Chile’ in South America for two years. Ralph worked as a watershed specialist and Mack learned to speak Spanish, a skill he would enjoy for a lifetime. He graduated from Robertson High School in Las Vegas, NM in 1962 and received a degree in Range Management from NMSU in l966. Mack married Betty Ann Bond of Corona NM on June 3, 1967. Mack worked as a Soil Conservationist in Artesia, Gallup & Espanola, before purchasing a farm in Tucumcari. Mack worked as a science teacher during the school year and farmed year round before expanding his operation in 1978 by purchasing a ranch in Corona. Mack continued to work in Tucumcari, but he made Corona his home. Mack’s 6’4 stature included a big heart and a big handshake. He was genuinely interested in people’s lives and enjoyed helping others succeed. Mack was an elder in the Corona Presbyterian Church and helped sponsor Christian youth activities. He supported Corona High School sports, rodeo, 4-H and FFA. Mack liked to work. He put many miles on vehicles and equipment actively farming at Tucumcari and ranching at Corona. He liked to turn broken parts into something useful. His love of old trucks led to a colorful collection of vintage vehicles. In addition to running his farm and ranch operations he was always been a supporter of community activities. He served on the Corona Board of Education, Lincoln County Fair Board, Lincoln County Planning and Zoning Commission, Canadian River Soil and Water Conservation District, Quay County Farm Bureau and was on the Board of Trustees for the Lincoln County Medical Center in Ruidoso. Mack was a member of NM Cattle Growers Association and Lincoln County Farm Bureau. He served on the board of directors for Farm Credit of New Mexico. Mack also served on the Otero/Lincoln FSA County Committee. He received Outstanding Conservationist awards from the Carrizozo Soil and Water Conservation District. He was preceded in death by his parents Ralph and Faye Bell of Tucumcari, in-laws, Dimmitt and Johnnie Bond of Corona and his grandson Colten Gunn of Ft. Sumner. Mack is survived by his loving wife, Betty Ann, daughter, Beverly Gunn (Clifford) of Ft. Sumner, grandchildren Katelyn Gunn of Phoenix AZ & McKayla Draper (Lane) of Okinawa, Japan, son, Dan Bell, (Crystal), of Corona, grandchildren Saige and Kyler Bell of Corona, sister Dixie Heckendorn (Harry) of Tucumcari and their children, Jody Lamm (Bob), John Heckendorn (Cathy) and Julie McDaniel (Mac), brother-in-law, Lerry Bond (Martha) and their children, Debbie Kuenning (Lance) of Imperial Nebraska and Mary Beth Bond of Albuquerque. Funeral services celebrating Mack’s life are scheduled for Tuesday, May 23, 2017 at the auditorium of Corona Schools. Viewing at 10:00 a.m. followed by service at ll:00 a.m. Pastor Cal West of Corona will officiate. Pall bearers are Lerry Bond, Harry Heckendorn, Clifford Gunn, Jerry Faver, Leon Porter, Joe Clavel, Pete Gnatkowski, Walter Garfield. Honorary pall bearers: Robert Curtis, George Faver, Paul Miller, Efrin Diaz, Virgil Owen, Wess Wells. Burial will be at the Corona Cemetery followed by a meal for family and friends at the Rec. Room of Corona Schools. Memorials may be made to the Village of Corona, to support the local Cemetery, Park, Library and Fire Department. Contact Village Clerk, Terri Racher at PO Box 37 Corona, NM 88318. (575) 849-5511 Arrangements are entrusted to Harris-Hanlon Mortuary, 107 Ross / PO Box 219, Mountainair, NM 87036 (505) 847-2331 www.harris-hanlonmortuary.com
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