Mary Annette Sampson Bell, age 76, went to be with her Lord August 22, 2013 at the Cancer Treatment Centers of America, Tulsa, with her husband Tim and son Jack at her side. Mary was born to Irwin E. Sampson and Helen H. Hunter July 8, 1937 in Des Moines, Iowa. She was pre-deceased by her parents and her first husband Jack Woodard, then sheriff of Polk County, Des Moines, Iowa. Mary is survived by her husband Tim Bell and her children: Cynthia Stanchak and husband Dave of Pittsburg, Pa and Jack A. Woodard of Muskogee, Ok.
Mary leaves behind her grandchildren: Josh, Jake and Taylor Woodard; “Ellie”, Hunter and Aubrey Stanchak. She also leaves behind two great-grandchildren. She is survived by her special Aunt Mary Winnie of Iowa City and her daughters, Penny Rembolt and Cheri Maybon-Lampman. Additionally, Mary had a special bond with her 1st cousin “DJ.” (Dr. John Freie). In her final days Tim, Jack Woodard, Tim’s sister Stephanie Bell, “DJ.” and wife Melody Freie, took special care of Mary as did her many friends and neighbors, as well as Dr. Paul Hobbs of Tahlequah. David and Cynthia Stanchak were always there for her worldly needs. Her son Jack was always there for her when the chips were down.
Mary used to joke about being an “I-wegian” — a contraction of Iowan with Norwegian blood. She was blond, blue-eyed gem even unto death ... she was so honest and steeped in her faith that she had the courage to tell it like it is — even about herself as she battled hard times in life. Then she would give that “little chuckle.” Mary had a heart of gold and helped many people. She was a foster mother to many orphans through Luthern Social Services in her early adult life in Des Moines. Mary helped many in the AA programs.
Beauty best describes Mary - inside and out. She was crowned a beauty queen in 1955 in Hawaii and then passed that beauty on to her daughter, Cynthia, who later became “Miss Iowa” in the “Miss USA” contest. Although her main thrust was her inner beauty for which she will always be remembered.
Mary truly loved Tim, her husband and her “rock” during her two-year plus battle with lung cancer.
Her relatives, children and grandchildren, and friends will miss that spunky little girl from Iowa immensely.
In lieu of flowers and other gifts, donations can be made to Valley View Church, 310 No. Meigs, Ft. Gibson, Ok, 74434, 918-351-9930, FBO(for the benefit) of Tim and Mary Bell. A memeorial service will be held on Thurs. 8/29/13, 11am at Valley View Church, Ft. Gibson, OK. A pending memorial service will also take place in Des Moines, Iowa.