Searching for relatives of Major Joseph X. Bell

Joost

Searching for relatives of Major Joseph X. Bell

Postby Joost » 2007 Sep 06 16:44

Hello,

Several weeks ago i have adopted the grave of Major Joseph X. Bell at the American Memorial and Cemetery Henri-Chapelle in Belgium.
I feel deep respect for all those American service men who gave their lives for my freedom and that of my country. I feel honored that i have the opportunity to do something back for one of those heroes.
I really would like to know more about `my` hero and am searching for relatives af Maj. Bell.
This is what i know about him;

Major Joseph X. Bell (service# O-382608)
22nd Fighter Sq, 36th Fighter Gr.
KIA on 10 march 1945 in Germany
He was from Rockbridge, Virginia
Was born in 1918
He was enlisted on 12 october 1940 in FT. Knox in Kentucky

Hopefully someone will be able to help me.

Thank you.

Joost Everson
Holland
Last edited by Joost on 2007 Oct 15 03:17, edited 1 time in total.

Wise One

Postby Wise One » 2007 Sep 09 14:50

Dank u wel, Joost, voor uw bericht.

De Nederlandse mensen bezoeken zelden dit Forum. Ik heb gezocht naar de persoon u vroeg over, maar ik heb niets nog gevonden.
Image
:P Dag ... en tot ziens :P

Joost

Postby Joost » 2007 Sep 09 16:40

Hello,

Thanks for your reply! Funny to meet someone here who speaks Dutch...!

Also many thanks that have taken time to look around for me, i really appriciate it.
I still haven`t found anything about this hero so i truly hope something comes out this forum...

If you find something that might be interesting for me, please let me know! Thanks!

Joost

harleygrl35

Postby harleygrl35 » 2007 Sep 09 18:21

Wise One wrote:Dank u wel, Joost, voor uw bericht.

De Nederlandse mensen bezoeken zelden dit Forum. Ik heb gezocht naar de persoon u vroeg over, maar ik heb niets nog gevonden.

:P Dag ... en tot ziens :P


:shock: :shock: :shock: *thud*

Wise One

Postby Wise One » 2007 Sep 09 21:51

Wha' hoppen there, Harleygrl?

You get whacked up side o' yo head by a windmill sail?

:wink: You be careful out there ... :wink:

Wise One

Postby Wise One » 2007 Sep 26 10:41

Joost ...

I did an online search of our National Archives, and found this data record on the soldier you are seeking.

It has an unusual entry, 4 years of college. Lexington VA is a college town in Rockbridge County, so it is possible that he attended either Washington & Lee University or Virginia Military Institute. His birthplace is given as Virginia, but his place of enlistment is given as Kentucky, so one wonders if his family lived there and he enlisted upon his return from college, or whether that is just the place he began his military training.

By the way, his serial number is listed as different from the number you gave, but perhaps these are different types of number. He is not listed in the US death database, but this is not surprising since only people who have a social security # are listed and it is unlikely that he ever had one.

The people below are listed in the local telephone book. While it is highly unlikely any of them are related to the person you seek information on, because of the high mobility of the US population and the relatively common last name, there is a tiny chance.

Bell, Edward
1398 Maury River Rd
Lexington, VA 24450
540-463-5336

Bell, Michael & Janice
148 Reid Rd
Lexington, VA 24450
540-463-9326

Bell, Wade
1111 Bethany Rd
Lexington, VA 24450

Bell, Fred O
102 Linden Ave
Buena Vista, VA 24416
540-261-3983

:) Ik vind jonge groene haring met uitjes zeer lekker. Tot ziens ... :)
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Joost

Postby Joost » 2007 Sep 27 16:12

thanks for all the info! You are very helpfull!

Wise One

Postby Wise One » 2007 Oct 20 11:55

Unearthed the following factual information from the cemetery:
Joseph X. Bell
Major, U.S. Army Air Forces
Service # O-382608
22nd Fighter Squadron, 36th Fighter Group
Entered the Service from: Virginia
Died: 10-Mar-45
Buried at: Plot F Row 6 Grave 66
Henri-Chapelle American Cemetery
Henri-Chapelle, Belgium
Awards: Purple Heart

Joost

Postby Joost » 2007 Oct 20 12:57

sorry, wise one. I have tried to delete this post because i have found relatives of Joseph Bell but i can`t delete my post...

I AM very grateful for your help!

thanks!

Wise One

Postby Wise One » 2007 Oct 20 13:25

So who are the relatives and where do they now live? What have you learned about his personal history, that of the family, and other relevant details? We'd like to know what our collective efforts yielded.

Joost

Postby Joost » 2007 Oct 23 04:46

After all, i have been able to find the sister of Joseph Bell and some other people who knew him from when he lived in Rockbridge.
The VMI (Virginia Military Institute) was able to send me a picture, he graduated on the VMI with the class of 1938.

Before Major Bell was send to the European war area, he was a flight intructor at a airforce base in California. He was an exellent pilot.

Major Joseph X. Bell was on a Armed Recon Mission over Germany on March 10th 1945 to support the American ground forces. During a attack, Major Bell made a dive and flew into the clouds. His wingman made a left turn and thought Bell would follow him. But Major Bell flew into a mountain that was hidden in the clouds. He died intantly and his plane was found some days later by American troops.
He was buried some days later at the Henri Chapelle Cemetery in Belgium. Fact is that Major Bell would have been promoted to Lieutenant Colonel a few weeks later.

Joseph Bell was from Goshen were he grew up. Last week there was a memorial for all the Goshen veterans who fought in WOII. Bell`s name is on a plaque that includes all the names of the men.

I am glad that i was able to find out more about Major Bell, to me he is a hero who gave his life for my freedom and that of my country...there are so many more like him and i am glad that all those American service men won`t be forgotten in my country. These men deserve this! Like many many other Dutch citizens, i visit the cemetery ofte to bring flowers to the men`s graves i have adopted. It `s good that many of these crosses have a face and a story now...

I know American service men are hated in some places in the world these days...we are still very thankfull to those who left their homes and country to bring us peace.. thank you!

Thank you very much for your help during my search.

Joost

Wise One

Postby Wise One » 2007 Oct 23 10:38

Fascinating! I find it very interesting to learn the results of your investigation, and thank you very much for sharing them with us all. You did a great job!

I notice that you made a photograph (of Bell?) your 'avatar'. Presumably, you have a larger photo, which I would really like to see. Maybe you could e-mail it to Stonewall and he would post it?

:) Dank u wel, Joost, voor uw cadeautje. :)

User avatar
Stonewall
Site Admin
Posts: 129
Joined: 2007 Jun 11 03:26

Postby Stonewall » 2007 Oct 23 22:53

Joost has kindly forwarded a copy of the photograph he obtained of the airman discussed earlier in this thread, which I am pleased to post below.
Image
Isn't it amazing that we, using this medium, can reach a quarter of the way around the world to learn something about our own history?
Thanks for your posts! Stonewall, your administrator ... just an "empty suit."

resigned

Postby resigned » 2007 Oct 24 06:01

Joost I live out near Goshen and would be glad to take a picture of the memorial if you would like. Just got to figure out how I would get it to you. I saw it and its impressive. Maybe I could send it to Stonewall and he could post it on the forum.

harleygrl35

Postby harleygrl35 » 2007 Oct 24 08:09

Do you have a digital camera Beck? If so, you can upload the picture to your PC, and then send it in an email attachment. If you don't have a digital, you could also scan a paper copy of the pic and attach it to an email that way.
Sorry, if I'm telling you stuff you already know, I'm not trying to say you're stoopid! :wink:

harleygrl35

Postby harleygrl35 » 2007 Oct 24 08:19

Oh and um, I was wondering. Is it wrong to want to harmlessly flirt with Wise One on a public forum???
Just sayin' :oops:

Seriously? I think it's the cowboy hat.

Joost

Postby Joost » 2007 Oct 24 11:53

beckonwood, i would really like to have a picture of the memorial. I would really appriciate it if you could take a picture for me, can you send it by e-mail? Thanks!

resigned

Postby resigned » 2007 Oct 24 14:08

So Harleygrl is a girly grl. :D Yes I can take a picture with my digital camera. Will do this weekend as I am not feeling so good. boo hoo. Promise. I used to do pictures once in awhile for the Rockbridge weekly. Now I just do pictures of my adorable grandaughter. What a model.

harleygrl35

Postby harleygrl35 » 2007 Oct 24 16:42

beckonwood wrote:So Harleygrl is a girly grl. :D Yes I can take a picture with my digital camera. Will do this weekend as I am not feeling so good. boo hoo. Promise. I used to do pictures once in awhile for the Rockbridge weekly. Now I just do pictures of my adorable grandaughter. What a model.


Shhh..don't tell anybody, I have a reputation to project..er...protect! :wink:

resigned

Postby resigned » 2007 Oct 24 17:02

Mumms the word. Won't tell a soul.