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John Wesley “Wess” Lyell

John Wesley “Wess” Lyell

Oct. 29,1937-May 17, 2014

Wess went home to be with his Lord and Savior May 17, 2014, as a result of a fall at home. 

He was born Oct. 29, 1937, in Los Angeles, son of Walter Lyell and Juanita Goble Lyell. 

Wess graduated from Hemet High School, in California, in 1955. 

He enlisted in the U.S. Navy, serving from 1956 to 1960. He flew anti-submarine warfare missions. He was later assigned to the U.S. Marine Corps Air Facility in Iwakuni, Japan. 

In 1961, Wess married Constance Marie Fischer in San Leandro, California. Together they had two sons and two daughters. The marriage ended in 1991. 

Eventually he moved to Grass Valley, California, where he built a home 13 miles from town. Wess “wanted to get away” and became a “mountain man.” 

In 1998, Wess married Beverly Cagle at a garden wedding at home. He retired from Tri Continent Scientific in 2002. 

While visiting the Oregon coast, they fell in love with Brookings, where they made their home the past 12 years. Wess loved fishing, hiking, beachcombing, camping and traveling. Their soon-to-come-true dream was to travel the U.S in their R.V. Wess and Beverly were volunteer firefighters with Cape Ferrelo Fire Department. They worked at the annual Fish Fry, where Wess could be seen behind the barbecue, grilling tuna. Wess was a member of Brookings VFW Post 966 and also a founding member of the Coastal Hour Exchange Barter Club in Brookings-Harbor. As a hobby he made beautiful jewelry.

Beverly was his life and best friend. He dearly loved all his children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren and had many friends. He had a big heart and was a gentle man who would be available to help anyone in need. Wess was a great storyteller and loved to hear and tell jokes. He loved to “experience life to the fullest.” 

His greatest passion was in loving the Lord and serving him faithfully. For many years he led Bible Study groups and planted seeds of the Lord in many hearts. He enjoyed finding the secrets of the Word of God hidden in the Bible.

Wess was preceded in death by his parents; brothers Tim and Bob. 

He is survived by his beloved wife Beverly; son Mark Lyell and wife Madeleine; daughter Kristine Bell and husband Mike; daughter JoAnn Hoover and husband Glenn; son John Lyell and wife Jennifer; stepsons David Held and wife Mary, Rick Held and wife Karen; stepdaughter Melinda Ellis and husband Kelly; brothers Darrell Lyell and wife Dianna, Ron Lyell; sister Sally Dennis and husband Steve; former wife and friend Connie Villella. Also surviving are 20 grandchildren; 16 great-grandchildren; and numerous nieces and nephews. 

A Celebration of Life will be at 4 p.m. Sunday, May 25, at Seventh-day Adventist Church on Park St., Brookings, Pastor Jose Galvez officiating. 

VFW Post 966 will perform a military service at 11:15 a.m. Monday, May 26, on the boardwalk at the Port of Brookings Harbor. Commander Rick Bremer will officiate. 

In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations in Wess’ name be made to Brookings VFW Post 966.

Submitted by the family. 


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