WASHINGTON — Colleen Allen Bell, “Honey,” passed away peacefully on the morning of May 6, 2021, at the age of 92, in Arlington, Wash.
She was born Oct. 11, 1928, to Ethan LaSalle and Louise Packard Allen, in Logan, Utah. Upon high school graduation, she went on to attend college in Ogden, Utah.
She married Wilbur H. “Pat” Bell, on April 9, 1955. They began their lives in Ontario, Oregon, and later moved to Hailey, Idaho. There they raised their three children while Colleen worked from home and offered kindergarten care to neighborhood kids and substitute taught at Hailey and Ketchum Elementary Schools. She also enjoyed creating crossword puzzles to sell. Mostly, she was a wonderful stay-at-home mother, keeping her three children occupied, loved, and fed. In the summer months, she was the sole parent while Pat attended college in Pocatello. Colleen faithfully took her children to swimming lessons and, in the winter, took them to skiing lessons on Saturdays and then skiing on Sundays after church.
In 1969, they moved to Condon, Oregon, and she continued to care for her family while also working for the Condon School District, as their Speech Therapist.
In 1971, they decided to make a complete life change, and they moved the family to the Long Beach Peninsula, where they settled and bought Doupe’s Furniture Store, in Ilwaco, Wash. While that endeavor didn’t work out as planned, Pat went back to teaching, and when grandbabies came into the world, “Honey” cared for three granddaughters full-time, while their parents worked. Honey’s creativity and warmth came together in the form of beautifully knitted sweaters for babies and children. Many friends and family have shared her beautiful, hand-crafted creations. Her creative ingenuity inspired her to place the zipper on the back of the sweaters to best suit the needs of wiggly little ones. To this day, the sweaters are still in beautiful condition and being passed to loved ones.
Later in life, Colleen developed a passion for mosaics, creating beautiful, colorful, and ornate mosaics on vessels and tabletops. Her family greatly cherishes these pieces.
Honey always put her family first. She was kind and caring, she taught us all many lessons for life. And she had enough energy to make sure her kids and grandkids were happy, busy, clean, and oh so loved. She would and did sacrifice anything for her family. She enjoyed reading and Sudoku puzzles. She was an avid sports fan, thoroughly enjoying the Seahawks, the Mariners and the Boston Red Socks. She spoke eloquently and always corrected everyone’s grammar; a few businesses were also informed when they didn’t use words correctly on their reader boards.
Colleen approached all stages of her life with beauty, dignity, and grace. As her time grew near, those around her knew how ready she was to leave this earth. She also let us know how blessed she felt, as she had her mind and good health. She gave thanks to God for the good, long life she was given.
Colleen’s husband, Pat, preceded her in death. Her brothers, Vell Warthen and Bert Warthen also preceded her in death. She leaves her children, Tad and Theresa Bell of Kailua Kona, Hawaii, Micky and Darrell Smith of Arlington, Wash., and Kristi and Mike Unruh of Long Beach, Wash.; grandchildren, Taylor Bell and Tate-Madison Bell, Aaron Smith and Kalan Smith, Heather Soule, Cassie Unruh, and Robyn Unruh; great-grandchildren, Maverick Smith and Hudson Smith, King Tolston, Nora Soule, and Aila Soule.
The family greatly appreciates the great staff who lovingly took care of her at Sharon Care in Centralia, Wash., and Cascade Valley Living Center in Arlington, Wash. She received wonderful care and compassion while in their homes.
Honey passed on many lifelong lessons, one of which is to always treat your children, grandchildren, and greats, equally. Love them all fully and unconditionally.
A private family gathering is being planned in her honor. In her memory, please say something kind and positive to a stranger. She did this often.