Webster and Section Five Mourns the Loss of Don Bell

- Don BellIt is with great sadness that Section Five learned of the recent death of long-time player, lacrosse coach and fan, Don Bell of Webster. Don coached the scholastic and collegiate arenas and after his retirement from the game, was a great fan and friend to anyone who loved the game as he did.

As a player at Penn State University in 1955 he was credited with 193 saves was a team captain in his senior year. After serving in the US Army in Korea he served as a teacher in Lyons and the the Rochester City schools. He then spent thirty-five years at Monroe Community College and after his retirement was named Professor Emeritus.

Don was the first coach for the Tribunes, staring with a club team in 1970. They took the field as a Varsity program in 1974 with four Webster players in starting roles. In attack was Bill Hartung, playing defense were Randy Hnyda and Dan May and in the midfield was Scott Steehler. Don was inducted into the MCC Hall of Fame in 2008.

In 2005 he was inducted into the Rochester Chapter of US Lacrosse Hall of Fame. He was presented by his son, Peter. During his remarks Don spoke about his family, many of whom were in attendance and spoke at length about wonderful relationships with players and fellow coaches.

When his coaching days were over, Don remained a constant visitor to games, especially his beloved Webster teams. Rarely sitting in the stands, he was most often found "hanging on the fences", conversing with other fans and the many friends he had created over the years. Always quick to pick up on a technical aspect of the game, we would be among the first to notice small details that would make a difference. In recent years he took great delight in watching his grandchildren play the game.Don Bell

Mike Stacy recounted a story (on the Webster Lacrosse web site):

"As legends go, there is always a great story  that seems to get better every year it is told. One story is that Don was one of the few goalies to ever shut-out Jim Brown, the legendary Syracuse University lacrosse player who happened to also be “THE” FOOTBALL HALL OF FAME Jim Brown who went on to play for the Cleveland Browns. As the story goes, Mr. Brown was rather displeased with Don’s work between the pipes that day or maybe his demeanor after the game and as such, he committed an act of very unsportsmanlike conduct toward Don during the post game handshakes."

 He is survived by his wife of fifty-seven years, Faith, his children, Bridget, Mary, Matthew (Kimberly) and Peter (Deanna) Bell, his grandchildren, Zachary, Madison, Manny, Jack and Sloane and his sister, Elaine (Richard) Fuller.

This grand old gentleman of the game will be greatly missed.

 



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