Life Story: Maxine Bell, 80; Was Township Teacher

Mrs. Maxine Bell passed away on March 24 at Foothill Acres in Hillsborough. She was 80 years old.

Maxine was born and raised in Brooklyn, NY. After obtaining her Master’s Degree from Brooklyn College, she began a long career as an elementary school teacher in Brooklyn. While on a blind date arranged by one of her closest friends, Maxine met her future husband, Joe. The young couple married and moved to Queens. They then moved to the Somerset section of Franklin Township in 1972 to raise a family of their own.

“Mrs. Bell” as she was known to her beloved students was employed as an elementary school teacher for 25 years with the Franklin Township Public School System. Following her retirement, not surprisingly, Maxine continued her career as a substitute teacher at MacAfee Road School.

She was a longtime member of Temple Beth El in Somerset and a member of the Temple Beth El Sisterhood. Maxine was a participant in the Temple’s inaugural adult Bat Mitzvah class. Maxine enjoyed spending time with her family, especially during her summer trips with Joe and his high school friends to Ogunquit, Maine and her family to Cape May. She also was an avid reader, and enjoyed shopping, knitting, and flowers. Above all else she was a modest woman who took remarkable care of her husband, children, grandchildren, and all of those she loved. She will be deeply missed.

Maxine is survived by her husband of 55 years, Joseph Bell of Somerset and their children, Jeffrey Bell and his wife Libby, and Betsy Thiffault and her husband Jef. She is also survived by her beloved grandchildren, Sophia and Logan Thiffault, and her brothers Barry Kummer and Robert Kummer and his wife Janny.

Funeral services will take place at 11 a.m. March 26 at Gleason Funeral Home, 1360 Hamilton Street. Please arrive by 10:45 a.m.

Graveside services will follow at Beth Israel Cemetery in Woodbridge.

Despite her love for flowers, please consider a donation in Maxine’s name to Alzheimer’s of New Jersey at www.alznj.org.

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