Jim was born Sept. 17, 1929, to John B. and Hila (Eberwein) Pell in Clay County. He graduated from Van Buren High School in 1948, where he excelled in Basketball. He was a lifelong Blue Devil.
On June 30, 1951, he married his high school sweetheart Shirley Girton. They recently celebrated their 60th wedding anniversary.
During high school and after graduation he began a lifelong career involving several family businesses: General Roofing and Siding Company, Pell Homes Inc., Pell's Bargain Mart, Pellco, Pell Investments, and Pell farms. Pell Homes built several housing additions in the Wabash Valley.
Jim was a pilot and loved to fly. He and several close friends made trips around the country on business and pleasure.
Jim was an accomplished outdoorsman. He loved to bird hunt, especially quail but enjoyed all types of small game hunting.
He was an avid angler and enjoyed both freshwater and saltwater fishing. He was also well known for ice fishing. Teaching his family to hunt and fish was a huge part of his life.
He always enjoyed family trips to Canada and Florida. He especially enjoyed spending time with family and friends on the "porch" in Fort Myers Beach.
His love of Christ and his family were most treasured by Jim throughout his life. He was a Christian and attended the Harmony United Methodist Church.
He was also a member of the Good Samaritans and El Shaddai Emmaus Community.
Jim also belonged to many other organizations: Elks (50 years), Knightsville Masonic Lodge (50 years), Zorah Shrine (50 years), Aircraft Owners and Pilot Association, Boy Scouts of America and many others.
Jim had a large family and extended family. He was always willing to help give sound advice if asked. Jim loved being with them.
A catch of fresh fish might be the only thing needed for a party at Mam and Pap's.
Jim is survived by his wife Shirley (Girton) Pell; children Dan (Nancy) Pell, Judy (Fritz) Maurer, and Jane (Bob) Osborn; grandchildren Elisha (Ryan) London, Mitch Maurer, Jim Pell, Ann Pell (fiancÚ Nat Taylor), Marc (Susan) Maurer, Nikki Osborn (Matt LeMay), Michael Maurer (Colleen Summerlot), William Osborn (Colleen Barr); and great-grandchildren Ella London and Jackson James London.
He is also survived by brothers John R. and Rose Marie Pell, William E. and Peggy Pell, sister Shirley and Chris Koehler, and many nieces and nephews.
He was a family man, Christian, and a man's man. He will be greatly missed.
Services for Jim will be at Lawson-Miller Chapel, Monday, Oct. 17, 2011, at 11 a.m., with Pastors Terry Jeffers and Bob Kumpf officiating. Burial will follow at Calcutta Cemetery. Visitation will be at the funeral home Sunday from 4-8 p.m. In lieu of flowers donations may be made to Serving on the Street, P.O. Box 783 Brazil, Ind., 47834. Visit www.frenchfuneralhome.com to light a candle in his memory.