Good afternoon everyone, I am Robbie, Brad’s daughter. My dad was born October 13th 1948 to Arlin and Ruth Fell in Idaho Falls in the Temple View hospital. He was their first child and was later joined by three sisters, Karla, Elizabeth, and Kirstin. In 1953 the family moved to Rigby ID to the maternity ward that was owned by my grandma, Ruth. My dad was 5 years old. During this time, my dad’s sisters have many fond memories of him. The family had a black cocker spaniel. My dad loved this dog and would play for hours in the yard with his dog. His sisters would go to the park and watch him fly his RC planes. He was always so kind to them while they played and watched him fly his planes.
In 1964 the family moved to a farm. He spent his time talking care of the farm and milking cows before and after school. During this time, my dad had major events occur that significantly altered his life. He came down with a severe case of mono, but continued to do his chores on the farm. Shortly after that he came down with Rheumatic fever, which caused damage to his heart valves. At the age of 16 my dad was in a traumatic vehicle accident. He was with the scouts hauling lava rock. The door of the truck flew open. He held on to the door, but could not keep his hold. He was flipped over the door, hitting his head, and landed on the ground where the rear wheel of the truck ran him over and broke many of his bones.
His family did not think he would live, but he made it through and showed them that he was going to live. At that point his family did not think he would walk again. As you all know, my dad was a very stubborn man and he showed them. He defied all odds and went on to attend college.
He attended ISU and Ricks college and was working on a degree in drafting. While attending Ricks college he met my mom, Ruth Turner. In April 1971 they married and had 6 children; Keith, Jennifer, myself, Clifford, Heather, and Bryan. Their marriage later ended in divorce.
My favorite memory of my dad was right after my parents divorced. He planned a trip to Lagoon, it was just the 7 of us. He planned it down to every detail because it was important to him that it was memorable to us. He spared no expense and even went as far as trying to pair each sibling perfectly so that we would all have the best time.
My dad paired me with Clifford…. It is my fault that to this day that he won’t go on any amusement park rides. I am sorry Emily.. anytime you are with Aunt Robbie, I will go on rides with you.
Shortly after that trip my dad started Dating Lori Brown, the neighbor across the street, which shocked us all. But what they had was sweet and kind. What looked peculiar to us made sense to them. They later married and my dad gained 4 additional children, Dannielle, Dustin, Dayna, and Derick. My Dad left for work everyday before Lori did. Before he left for work he would go into their room to make sure she was tucked in and warm. He would kiss her on the cheek as he left. While they were dating, Derick wanted to play T-Ball but was afraid of the ball. My dad would come over every night and throw ball with Derick until he was over his fear and was able to join the T-ball team.
After my dad married Lori he wanted his kids to have a relationship. He bought a boat and figured if he could get all 10 of us on the boat we would pull together and bond. For me and many of us the boat had good memories and great lessons. When Derick was on his mission he understood and knew how to maneuver boats, while other missionaries struggled with them. For me, It was the first time I got sick on the boat and later learned I was sick because I was pregnant with my son Patrick. I was determined to have my son a week early so my dad took me out on the boat and let me bounce around on the bough of the boat with hopes to jump start my labor. But my son, who is as stubborn as my dad, did not come early, in fact he came a week late. Talk about teaching me a lesson about patients. Those where happy moments in my dad’s life. In fact, despite of everyone telling him to get rid of the boat, he kept the boat long after we were all gone. In his garage sits the tubes. In his closet hangs the wet suits.
My dad would bring my younger siblings and step siblings to the library every other Saturday. He would help Bryan pick out books that Bryan would enjoy reading. After they finished at the library they would go to Carsten’s bakery and each would get 2 donuts. This tradition was important to him.
Many of us have different memories of him and some are not all positive. We may have thought he did not love us, however, he loved us with his whole heart. But he did not know how to show us
My dad was happiest when he was engrossed in aviation. I remember having a conversation with him around 2002, he was so excited to tell me that he was taking flight lessons with the goal of getting his pilot’s license. Over the phone I could tell his eyes were lit up like a kid based on the tone and excitement in his voice.
On Thursday I went to his house. When I walked into his shop I could tell that was his happy place. I could feel the positive energy. In the middle of the shop was a shiny plane he had been building and in the corner of his shop was stacks of CDs that he would listen to, Boston, Eagles, and Foreigner. This plane is so shiny and pretty. You could tell he had poured his heart and soul into it. He had meticulously worked on this plane to make sure it was perfect.
He spent the last years of his life immersed in the church. He was the teacher in the high priest group and was constantly helping with neighbor’s home projects with the help of his home teaching partner, Wayne Hanson.
My dad passed on Tuesday, March 28th at 8:58PM. He was a complex man that we are still learning new things about. As I get more knowledge I gain a better understanding of who my dad was.
He was irritable and impatient. But he was also loving and beautiful. I appreciate him and am grateful for the man he was. He made me and my siblings the people we are today.
In the name of Jesus Christ