Stowers Funeral Home


Herbert Joel Bell

September 11, 1940April 29, 2021

Herbert Joel Bell of Valrico, FL & Jefferson, NC passed away peacefully on April 29, 2021 surrounded by his loving family at the age of 80 following a 2-1/2 year battle with pancreatic cancer. Born in Brooklyn, NY he was preceded in death by his first wife Beulah Bell, his parents, Henry & Lena Bell, and his sisters, Rosalind Dreese and Audrey Rosenthal. Survived by his loving wife, Catherine, daughter Linda Springfield (Chuck), son Kenneth Bell (Jean), daughter Kimberly Bardakjy (Eugene), daughter Lori Bell, grandchildren Sean & Christopher Springfield, Jake & Kaitlin Bell, and Gene & Faith Bardakjy and his faithful fur baby Savannah. After attending Miami High School, Herbie started his career in the food business. In 1970, he had a vision to start his own food brokerage company, Bell Brokerage, with his wife Beulah. Together they built a successful company. Herb was more than just a trailblazer in the industry, he showed others around him the value of treating everyone with respect and dignity. Herb never met a stranger and he never passed an opportunity to help someone in need. At the peak of Bell Brokerage’s success, while others were playing golf, Herb found his place deep sea fishing while entertaining clients and customers, as well as spending quality time with his family in the Florida Keys. In the early 1990s, Herb met his second true love, Cathy Romano, and the two married in 1993. They built a beautiful life together traveling and spending time at their mountain home in North Carolina with their Jefferson Landing family. After he retired from Advantage Sales & Marketing in 2009, he surprised everyone with a newfound passion for golf. He also served on the board of LifePath Hospice for 10 years where he brought his business acumen and love of golf to help raise funds for the annual golf tournaments. Despite his personal battle with pancreatic cancer, Herb never stopped thinking of others. Following his diagnosis, he added to his philanthropic efforts by donating to Moffitt Cancer Center. His true wealth was in his kindness and generosity to all that have met him. He loved helping people any way he could and making them happy. For those who knew Herb, he was bigger than life. He always brought a special charm with him when he walked into any room. Herbie was the toughest nice guy you could ever meet. While this world may seem to be a lesser place without Herb in it, the truth is his 80 years on this planet made the world a better place for everyone. A celebration of life will be held honoring our beloved Herb between 4:00 & 7:00 pm on Friday, May 21, 2021 at The Regent, 6437 Watson Rd, Riverview, FL 33578.

In lieu of flowers, the family asks that donations be made to one of the following: LifePath Hospice, 3010 W. Azeele Street, Suite 120, Tampa, Florida 33609 or at Moffitt Cancer Center Foundation, MBC-Found, 12902 Magnolia Drive, Tampa, Florida 33612, online at, or by calling 800-456-3434 ext 1403. In the memo line please write: Pancreatic Cancer Research


No public services are scheduled at this time. Receive a notification when services are updated.


Herbert Joel Bell

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Tom Archer

May 13, 2021

Herb Bell was a wonderful man. He was both a mentor and friend and will be missed. He led by example and had a passion for life. Herb lived life with enthusiasm and enjoyment and was a positive influence in my life. Whenever I think of Herb a smile comes across my face. Rest in peace my dear friend. God Bless the family you leave behind.

Laurie Van Dette Taylor

May 10, 2021

Where do I begin to express what this wonder man meant to me? My dad and Herb were friends and my dad was also a frozen food buyer. We were connected through the grocery business. I had the opportunity to work for Beulah and Herb at Bell Brokerage. I also remember when Beulah got sick and I remember her “going home”celebration of life. They both helped me in my spiritual life. I also got to go out deep sea fishing when my dad would go out with Herb on occasion. Herb took care of our reception when I married my high school sweetheart, Ray. We had such a blast at our reception. I remember being in a chair during a dance and going up in the air. Such fun memories. I could go on and on. Herb was one of the kindest people I knew. Oh and need I forget to mention our wedding present from Herb and Beulah.....a microwave. It was THE BEST!! We had that thing for 15 years , maybe longer. I jokingly called it our dinosaur microwave. I still miss that thing.
Cathy, I have never personally met you, but we love mutual people, Herb and Kat. So , I feel a bond with you. If you need a friend, I am here. I know you will miss your “Herbie”. He will truly be missed by many. But what a great place this world is because of him. God bless you and all the family. ❤️

Vivian Szigethy

May 10, 2021

You were a GOOD MAN Herb. Thank You for making my cousin Cathy HAPPY, LOVED, and SAFE. God placed the two of you together because you were a PERFECT match. Everyone could see and feel the love you both had for each other. From the moment anyone met you You made them feel comfortable and like family. We were all Truly Blessed to have had you in our lives. You will always be in my heart and thoughts. XOXO

Mike Evans

May 9, 2021

Herb knew I was tight with money so he was determined for me to buy a Rolex Watch after the first company equity deal. He maneuvered me to the Jared store in Tampa by saying he needed to get his watch cleaned. Since I was riding with him I had no choice. Well once we got in there he is showing me one watch after another. And yes I bought one and he was so happy I did. I still wear the watch 16 years later. Herb was a special friend, mentor, golf buddy, and great breaker of bread with me. He will be greatly missed.

Amelia San Martin

May 9, 2021

Herb and Cathy Bell were instantly known as the nicest couple I have ever met! Our family watched their beloved black Cocker spaniel Molly whenever they left on another adventure to share together.
Like his family, Herb loved his dogs and made sure they always had the best of everything!
He was a people person and a dog lover as well.
We will miss you Herb, your kindness, and
your warm smile.
You made this world a better place!
Love, Amelia and Amanda San Martin 💗

Dick and Bev Briggs

May 9, 2021

Love to our heart friend and his beautiful family. Dick and Bev
Col. 1:27

Linda Burkhardt

May 9, 2021

From the first day I and my family met Herb we just knew the person he was. I know just how much he loved Cathy and his family. Herb had the biggest most loving heart. You will be missed. You are now with your other loved ones and friends. Xoxo

Bill Joyce

May 2, 2021

I am so sorry for your loss. Herb was a great person, caring, giving and would do anything for everybody. Herb was always great to me when I worked for him.

I know he will be missed by many for his positive and loving energy he showed everyday.

My prayers are with the entire family