Lester Theodore Shell, 88, of Pine Bluff, passed away Wednesday, February 29, 2012, at Jefferson Regional Medical Center.

Lester Theodore Shell, 88, of Pine Bluff, passed away Wednesday, February 29, 2012, at Jefferson Regional Medical Center.

Born November 3, 1923, in Ain Community in Grant County, Ark., he was the youngest son of the late Franklin T. and Bertha C. Fielding Shell. He was reared and received his education in Pine Bluff, graduating from Pine Bluff High School in 1941.

In 1951, he married the love of his life, Alta Marie Kerr. They had a wonderful and extraordinary life together. They traveled to many places and enjoyed their home life together with their three sons, Randy, Mickey and Marty.

Mr. Shell was destined to be a farmer, he first worked with his father on F.T. & Sons farm, he then partnered with his brother and together they owned Shell Brothers farm. To complete the third generation of farmers, he was the owner and operator, along with his sons, of Lester Shell & Sons Farm. For over fifty years, he and his family grew cotton, soybeans and raised cattle, in southeast Jefferson County. He was successful as a farmer, being named The Jefferson County Young Farm Family of the Year in the late 50ís. After fifty four years he retired from farming in fall of 1985. He then went to work for the Jefferson County Road Department as the foreman of the road crew. After twenty years with the county, he retired in 2007 at the age of 83.

Mr. Shell was also active in his community serving on many boards including, the Board of Directors of Farm Bureau and the Southern Farmers Association. He helped found the Ladd Water Users Association as well as served on the Board of Directors for over twenty years. He was also a Past President of Jefferson County Cattlemenís Association and an active member. When his children were young he was also a dedicated 4-H Leader. He was a founder and charter member of the Southeast Jefferson County Volunteer Fire Department.

He was a loving Christian man that was dedicated and active in his church. His family founded Shell Chapel Cumberland Presbyterian Church and he has been a lifelong member. He was past Sunday School Superintendent as well as a Sunday School Teacher and Youth Leader. He was an Elder in his church as well as serving on many Syndical Boards of the Cumberland Presbyterian Synod of Arkansas, including the Camp Peniel Board and was a Delegate to the General Assembly of the Cumberland Presbyterian Church.

He was preceded in death by his parents, his brother Kirby Shell, his sisters, Floy Reed and Ruth Wilson and one granddaughter, Randi Shell.

His survivors include his wife of over 60 years, Marie Shell; his three sons, Randy Lester Shell and wife, Lou Anne, Mickey Kirby Shell and wife, Joyce and Marty Shell and Tommy Dunlap, all of Pine Bluff; his grandchildren, Margaret Shell-Howsen and husband, Steven Howsen and Michael David Shell, all of Pine Bluff; his great-grandchildren, Avery Peyton, Austin Howsen and Ansley Howsen; and a wealth of friends and family.

Funeral services will be 1:00 p.m., Friday, March 2, 2012, in the Chapel of Ralph Robinson & Son, with Reverend Joshua Murray officiating. Burial will follow in Shell Chapel Cemetery. The family will receive friends 6-8 p.m., Thursday, March 1, 2012, at Robinsonís. Friends may sign the online register at www.ralphrobinsonandson.com.

Memorials may be made to Shell Chapel Cumberland Church, 2143 Grider Field Road, Pine Bluff, Arkansas.