Bell celebrates 50 years
by RACHEL DAVIS
Nov 14, 2012 | 1936 views | 0 0 comments | 9 9 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Sumiton Mayor Petey Ellis, left, stands with Luther Watts, center, the owner of Bell Funeral Home and Funeral Director Zach Ellis after a ceremony commemorating the facility’s 50th anniversary.  – Photo by: Rachel Davis.
Sumiton Mayor Petey Ellis, left, stands with Luther Watts, center, the owner of Bell Funeral Home and Funeral Director Zach Ellis after a ceremony commemorating the facility’s 50th anniversary. – Photo by: Rachel Davis.
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SUMITON — Bell Funeral Home on Sumiton’s Main Street celebrated 50 years of serving the community last week.

The funeral home originally opened its doors on Nov. 10, 1962. It is now under its fourth owner, Luther Watts, who purchased the funeral home in 2004.

It was originally founded by Chester Collins, of what would become the Collins-Burke Funeral Home in Jasper, but was sold a few years later to its second owner.

“The same spirit of compassion that was then, is the same spirit of compassion that is now,” Funeral Director Zach Ellis said during a ceremony Friday at the funeral home.

According to Zach Ellis, when Watts took over in 2004, the funeral home averaged five or six funerals each month and now averages 10 or 15 funerals each month.

Sumiton Mayor Petey Ellis also attended the ceremony and presented Watts with a plaque.

“It has always been a privileged to know Luther,” Petey Ellis said. “Our family has used this facility and I’ve had many friends who used this facility, and it has always been done with the best of service and the best of dignity.

“We are privileged to have this facility in our community.”

Watts also expressed his gratitude to the community, his employees and the city during the ceremony.

“I’m grateful to the people who have allowed us to serve them,” Watts said to those gathered in the funeral home’s chapel on Friday.

Bell Funeral Home can be reached at 648-6611 or by visiting their website at www.bellsumiton.com.