Herbert Colwell

July 3, 1930April 12, 2021

Herbert Colwell July 3, 1930 - April 12, 2012

Herbert “Herb” Colwell born July 3, 1930, passed away peacefully in his sleep at his home in Tucson, Arizona, on April 12, 2021, at the age of 90 years. He was better know as “Daddy” “Grandpa” and “Dad”.

Herb was a special kind of man. He lived by his word and his word was his honor. He was a very kind and thoughtful man with unique skills. Herb could make saddles, work on cars, fix roofs, coolers, and just about anything else he came into contact with that was broken. He treated injured wild animals, talked to the quail, and loved being in the Arizona desert. He laughed easily, kept his temper in check (unless he was dealing with the telephone company) and always had good advice for those of us that went to him in a quandary. He taught those he loved many of those skills and passed on the traits he lived by to both his son and daughter.

Herb met the love of his life, Dorothy Dell Henderson, on a blind date. Herb and Dorothy had a mutual friend that “hooked them up.” They dated a short period of time and Herb asked Dorothy to marry him. She, of course, said “sure, after you ask my daddy.” They were married in 1954 and remained happily married for 53 years. Together, they had two children: Kevin Colwell and Kimberly Colwell.

Herb is survived by his twin sister, Helen, sister Ruth and brother Earl. He is also survived by his children, Kevin Colwell (Starla J. Kiggins-Colwell) and Kimberly Colwell-Cleary (Dana Joel Cleary). Herb left the legacy of too many grandchildren to count and an entire new generation of great-grandchildren. Each and every one of those grandchildren and great-grandchildren held a very special place in his heart and he in theirs.

Herb was preceded in death by his loving wife, Dorothy, his brother Ottis, and sisters May and Violet.

Herb was a Korean War veteran and will be interred with military honors on May 15, 2021, at 10:30 a.m., grave side at East Lawn Palms Mortuary & Cemetery located at 5801 East Grant Road, Tucson, AZ 85712. Pursuant to Herb’s wishes, and due to the Covid virus restrictions, there will be no visitation or gathering for a celebration of life.

Kevin and Kim invite each and every one of you to write a memory or share something that you may have experienced or shared with Herb. You may also choose to say a little something at the interment ceremony.

In lieu of flowers, the family request contributions be made to Wounded Warriors or Tunnel to Towers.


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


Herbert Colwell

have a memory or condolence to add?

Melissa Cleary

May 11, 2021

Going to my grandparent's house was always where I felt the safest; it was my refuge on more occasions than I can count. It is where I would go if something was broken, like my car, my shoes, purses, and even the many times I had a broken heart. It was just understood that grandpa could fix anything.

I think I can safely say that I can blame him for my overwhelming need to save ALL the animals. I remember watching as he would doctor all the doves, birds, and rabbits back to health. He was so patient. He would care for them, build splints, wrap their wounds, and I swear to this day that he could talk to them. I wanted more than anything to be just like him.

There are so many memories... from playing make-believe in his ties, hand-crafted leather belts and saddles, pizza with no red sauce, car and fashion repairs, his magic powers of being able to heal and talk to animals, to watching his face light up every time I would visit.

There is never a love quite like that of a grandpa's, especially this one. My world will never be the same without my grandparents in it. I will cherish their love always.

Becky Healy

May 7, 2021

Memories of Herb aren't complete without including the woman he loved, Dot. Herb and Dot were the kind of neighbors one could only hope to know! I met them shortly after moving into the house down the block. I called Dot my cookie lady since she was always there with a helping hand with my daughter. Herb and Dot's help included smiles, laughs, good family stories and a nice treat. Their warm welcomes were a given.
Dot had a wonderful fish pond in the patio leading into the house. It was those kind of touches that made me feel at home.
I was so touched by Dot telling me that Herb made sure her car was always full of gas and he brought her coffee in bed everyday. Herb was such a gentleman that he wasn't going to have Dot going to the gas station! It was rather old fashioned, and very sweet!
Our neighborhood is very rich in flora and fauna and on my walks with Dot she'd tell me stories of her children climbing certain trees. It was a very special feeling to think of her family, and now mine, enjoying these trees.
Herb and Dot's loving kindness is a legacy that lives on in how their family shows their caring for each other, and also in making the world a better place.

Brandi Comeau

May 7, 2021

As grandpas eldest grandchild, I remember lots of wonderful things about grandpa. Sometimes I would follow him around when he was working down the hill or doing projects around the house. He was always working on something. His leatherwork very much impressed me. I watched him make belts and wallets and he was so talented at it! He let me practice a few times too which was fun. Sleepovers always included yummy treats from the treat bowl and the most epic Ovaltine malt shakes ever! Summers were filled with drive through hose “car washes”, playing in the desert, and fun with my cousins. Oh, and I can’t forget to mention the hours of entertainment we received from grandpas moon boot from an old injury. It’s legendary entertainment stuck with me summer after summer! I sure will miss him!